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Far North Iwi to receive Maori fisheries assets

Far North Iwi to receive Maori fisheries assets

Ngati Kuri Iwi in the Far North has been approved as a Mandated Iwi Organisation (MIO) by Te Ohu Kaimoana (Maori Fisheries Trust).

Ngati Kuri is the last remaining Iwi organisation in Northland to achieve MIO status and will receive ownership of what is colloquially called the “Population Assets” from the Maori Commercial Fisheries Settlement. The population assets consist of deepwater quota, income shares in Aotearoa Fisheries Limited and cash, together holding an approximate value of $3.2 million.

Now that all Iwi in the Far North have become MIOs, work on allocating the “Coastline Assets”, which are valuable inshore, harbour, remaining deepwater and freshwater fishstocks, can also begin in earnest. Under the Maori Commercial Fisheries Settlement, it is a requirement that adjacent Iwi become MIOs before Te Ohu Kaimoana is able to allocate fisheries assets based on agreed coastlines.

Te Ohu Kaimoana board member Sir Archie Taiaroa said that Ngati Kuri had worked tirelessly to implement the structures required to become a MIO.

“This is a really great achievement for Ngati Kuri. Te Ohu Kaimoana recognises the huge effort to which the Iwi has gone to reach this point, including through the courts, and congratulates them. It took a lot of hard work, but Ngati Kuri has restored the reputation of the Trust Board,” Sir Archie said.

Ngati Kuri chairman Graeme Neho said this achievement would be hugely welcomed by the members of the Iwi and their whanau, and he paid tribute to the enduring legacy left by the late Hon Matiu Rata.

“Matiu started the process that eventuated in the Maori commercial fisheries settlement. If it were not for his efforts, Maori commercial fishing would have been relegated to a few small operators only, when collectively Maori are now the major stakeholders in this industry,” Mr Neho said.

He added that while it had taken a long time for the Iwi to gain MIO recognition, he was confident the Iwi members would see this as a turning point, and would work to grow the fisheries assets for the benefit of all Iwi members.

ENDS

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