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Momentous Milestone For Ngāti Uenukukōpako And Rotorua Airport

Ngāti Uenukukōpako Iwi Trust (Ngāti Uenukukōpako) and Rotorua Regional Airport (RRA) yesterday <> formalised their ongoing relationship with the official signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

The agreement was signed by Paraone Pirika and Wharangi Cookson on behalf of the Koeke (elders) of Ngāti Uenukukōpako, RRA Chairman Peter Stubbs and Chief Executive Nicole Brewer at a ceremony following the Airport’s AGM.

The MOU formalises the hapū and Airport’s desire to work closely together to recognise the past, while building a strong future that provides positive outcomes for everyone involved, including the immediate surrounding community.

Over the past four years, both parties have focused on ensuring better ways of working together, including regular hui to provide updates on developments and a platform for further discussion. This work has culminated in the MOU agreement.

Ngāti Uenukukōpako Iwi Trust chairman, Nireaha Pirika, says the agreement is an important acknowledgement for the iwi and will help to open doors for Ngāti Uenukukopako whānau.

“It offers us many opportunities to work together. Most importantly, it ensures an open and ongoing dialogue between Ngāti Uenukukōpako and the airport which will ultimately result in greater engagement and knowledge sharing, which will benefit the wider Rotokawa community.“

Airport Chief Executive, Nicole Brewer says the MOU is the next step in recognising the significance of Ngāti Uenukukōpako and their relationship to the Airport.

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“Ngāti Uenukukōpako has deep ancestral connections to Rotokawa and the land underlying Rotorua Airport,” she says.

“We are looking forward to working more closely with iwi representatives on development opportunities at the airport that create a thriving community, mutual economic benefits and a sustainable environment.”

Rotorua Airport Chairman, Peter Stubbs, says the MOU forms the basis of a solid future for the airport.

“The only way for us to achieve our vision of being a uniquely Rotorua hub that our community can be proud of is through genuine collaboration with our partners. The MOU will greatly contribute to ensuring better outcomes for everyone.”

Integral to the MOU is the commitment to a high-trust relationship founded on four key values:

  • Whakapapa - To grow the understanding of mana whenua and ensure processes are put in place which respect this position today and into the future
  • Whanaungatanga - RRA will make Ngāti Uenukukopako aware of internships, work experience and employment opportunities at RRA, so their rangatahi (young people) can gain skills that lead to employment and business opportunities
  • Wairuatanga - Ngāti Uenukukopako will provide cultural advice on matters that affect the airport
  • Manaakitanga – Ngāti Uenukukopako and RRA undertake to ensure that all communications between the parties are honest, respectful and guided by kindness

About Rotorua Regional Airport

Sitting on the shore of Lake Rotorua, Rotorua Airport has daily, direct services to Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. It also caters for international charter flights.

The airport plays a pivotal role in Rotorua’s community and economy, connecting locals, businesses and manuhiri with Rotorua and beyond.

Rotorua Airport operates as a Rotorua Lakes Council Controlled Organisation (CCO) with an independent board. More information: www.rotorua-airport.co.nz

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