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Māori investigate new business model for fisheries

Monday, 26 August, 2013

Māori investigate new business model for fisheries

A new business model for fisheries is likely to stimulate new ways of thinking at a national conference for Māori industry leaders next week.

Te Pūtea Whakatupu Trust’s third annual conference will generate deep discussion about the transformational fisheries model developed by Iceland, and whether it could be adapted for New Zealand fisheries, Trust chair Richard Jefferies said.

The Trust will bring Dr Ögmundur Knútsson, Dean of the School of Business and Science at the University of Akureyri in Iceland, to the conference in Waitangi to outline the development of the Icelandic fish industry from 1990 to 2012.

Te Pūtea Whakatupu Trust led a team of fisheries industry leaders to Iceland in May to investigate the country’s approach to fishing, which has turned around the Icelandic industry’s fortunes. The group included representatives from Te Ohu Kaimoana, Aotearoa Fisheries Limited, the Ministry for Primary Industries, and Ngāti Porou Seafoods Group. The itinerary was organised by a research team from the University of Auckland’s Asia Pacific Institute.
“The Iceland visit came on the back of challenging and somewhat controversial research by the University of Auckland team, who presented some of their findings at our conference last year,” Mr Jefferies said. “There is clear potential for New Zealand in the Icelandic model, and Dr Knútsson will provide an opportunity to continue the discussion.”
Under the theme Sailing Our Own Waka, the two-day conference Ngā Whetū Hei Whai – Charting Pathways for Māori Industry Futures 2013 will be held on September 2 and 3. Mr Jefferies said the conference would include a conversation on oil, gas and mining and would challenge some views on what Māori industries would look like in the future.

“Our aim as a Trust charged with advancing Māori development through research, education and training is to understand the potential of these industries for Māori. Through this conference, we are looking to chart the exciting journey ahead for Māori economic development and the leadership of tomorrow,” Mr Jefferies said.
Among those attending will be 46 business, management, science and agriculture degree students who each received $10,000 scholarships from the trust and its partners this year.
“These students are potential Maori business leaders who, on graduation, will be well-positioned to contribute to Maori economic growth,” Mr Jefferies said.

More than 20 national and international speakers include Sir Tipene O’Regan, who will give the keynote address, and Māori Television CEO Jim Mather. Rosa Walker, president and CEO of the Indigenous Leadership Development Institution in Canada, will provide an international perspective on building leadership capacity in indigenous people, and Lincoln University Vice-Chancellor Dr Andrew West will speak on Māori agribusiness and its future.

Te Pūtea Whakatupu Trust was established in 2004 under the Māori Fisheries Act.


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