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Fleet renewal creates jobs and opportunities for young Maori

Media Release
3 May 2016

Fleet renewal creates jobs and training opportunities for young Māori

New Zealand’s biggest fishing fleet renewal project in four decades is creating career opportunities for young Māori looking to join the marine industry.

Aotearoa Fisheries Limited, New Zealand’s largest iwi-owned fisheries business, has partnered with Nelson-based boat building company Aimex Service Group to build new technologically-advanced fishing vessels, with the first vessel hitting the water in August this year.

Aimex has recently undertaken a new Māori Youth Development Programme, designed specifically to give young Māori the opportunity to gain hands-on experience of the Marine Engineering industry.

Māori students will have the chance to learn a variety of skill sets such as Heavy Diesel Mechanical, Fabrication, Fitting and Diagnostics, Hydraulics, Engine Reconditioning, Machining, Shipwright Services, Engine Sales and Parts Procurement.

They will enter a staged programme on the Aimex site in Nelson that will be managed by Ārewa, a locally Māori-owned and operated company that support Maori to develop their own capability and potential.

Aotearoa Fisheries CEO Carl Carrington says the company is proud to partner with Aimex in a project that will create jobs and economic opportunities for young Māori.

“As New Zealand’s largest iwi-owned fisheries business, we have a strong commitment to investing in improved outcomes for Māori,” Carrington says.

“Providing young people with skilled, high-wage jobs is great for our economy and society, but these sorts of jobs can be hard to find in some parts of New Zealand. That’s where the Māori Youth Development Programme comes in.”

Aimex Managing Director Steve Sullivan says Aimex sees this programme as an alignment between its own vision and that of Aotearoa Fisheries.

“It’s an honour to partner with Aotearoa Fisheries in this project and to give young Māori the chance to take part in New Zealand’s important marine industry,” he says.

“We are a proudly New Zealand-owned business and we care passionately about our community. The fleet renewal project is great for our business but also for Nelson and now, thanks to the Māori Youth Development Programme, for young Māori as well.”

Aotearoa Fisheries does not own any fishing vessels, but contacts fishers to catch the company’s Annual Catch Entitlement. It will provide ifniacial support its fishers to help them invest in new vessels.

Expressions of interest from individuals are now being sought by Ārewa for the Maori Youth Development Programme.

For more information please visit or

- Ends –

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