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National-Maori Party agreement announced

John Key MP

National Party Leader

16 November 2008

National-Maori Party agreement announced

National Party Leader John Key today announced the details of the confidence and supply arrangement reached between the National Party and Maori Party.

"We expect that this agreement will be a good basis for a constructive working relationship in government," Mr Key says.

"The agreement emphasises the importance of mana maintenance and enhancement for both parties, and that the relationship will be one of good faith, and no surprises."

The agreement includes the establishment of a group to consider constitutional issues including Maori representation. The National Party agrees it will not seek to remove the Maori seats without the consent of the Maori people. Accordingly, the Maori Party and National Party will not be pursuing the entrenchment of the Maori seats this parliamentary term.

On the foreshore and seabed legislation, National recognises the concerns of the Maori Party. The National-led government will in this term review the application of the legislation to ascertain whether it adequately maintains and enhances mana whenua. If repeal is necessary, the Government will ensure there is appropriate protection in place to ensure all New Zealanders enjoy access to the foreshore and seabed, through existing and potentially new legislation.

Maori Party co-Leader Dr Pita Sharples will be appointed Minister of Maori Affairs, Associate Minister of Education, and Associate Minister of Corrections. Hon Tariana Turia will be appointed Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector, Associate Minister of Health, and Associate Minister of Social Development and Employment.

"I welcome the conclusion of this agreement with the Maori Party, and look forward to working in a constructive way to build the relationship further," says Mr Key.

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