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East Coast Hill Country Conference to Lift Focus

East Coast Hill Country Conference to Lift Focus

A conference focussing on the potential for the hill country from Cape Palliser to East Cape will take place in Hastings on 29-30 October.

Hawke’s Bay Regional Council is organising the conference, in association with Massey University, Ministry for Primary Industries, Horizons and Greater Wellington Regional Councils.

“There is potential for growth in the east coast hill country, and although there has been considerable focus over decades on improving farm performance, this will be an opportunity to take a broader look at all aspects of our communities needs across regional and political boundaries,” said Nathan Heath, Acting Manager Land Management.

The conference aims to involve a wide range of different perspectives on hill country issues from government, iwi, primary sector and community along the east coast of the North Island in considering the potential for increasing wealth in its broadest sense – social, economic, organisational and natural.

“Primary production is a huge part of the economy for us, and we need to look at the downstream effects of economic and climatic shocks – such as this week’s heavy rain – and how the whole community can be more resilient,” says Mr Heath.

The conference will involve 30 speakers on a range of topics from governance and planning through to sustainable land use, Māori agribusiness and rural communities.

Dr Morgan Williams and Guy Salmon will be speaking, along with leading researchers from Massey University, Waikato University and AgResearch, and expert advisors in Māori agribusiness, economics and farm sector groups.

The draft programme is available on http://www.imthere.co.nz/event/111-east-coast-hill-country-conference-2015.html

ENDS

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