Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


West Coast tackles economic growth with new $36.8m plan

Hon Simon Bridges
Minister for Economic Development
Hon Louise Upston

Associate Minister for Primary Industries

13 July 2017

Media Statement

West Coast tackles economic growth with new $36.8m action plan

The Government has joined the West Coast region to launch the Tai Poutini West Coast Economic Development Action Plan in Hokitika today.

The Action Plan identifies five priorities for lifting economic growth - better economic development support, growing the West Coast visitor economy, making it easier to invest and do business, supporting economic diversification, and improving connectivity and infrastructure.

“The Government is committed to supporting the West Coast economy to grow and become more resilient. That’s why we’re partnering with the region through this Action Plan to invest up to $36.8 million in areas like tourism, ICT and primary industries,” Mr Bridges says.

“This includes $11 million for a new Regional Research Institute that will use innovative research and manufacturing techniques to unlock the potential of New Zealand’s minerals resources.

“As part of the 2016 Growth Study, opportunities were identified in sectors that could provide future employment. This is now the catalyst for implementing a number of projects including investing in growing the Coast’s digital economy.

“Connectivity, and enabling people and businesses to make the most of this connectivity, is vital for the region to grow, and to attract and retain digital businesses, entrepreneurs and skills,” Mr Bridges says.

“The West Coast’s natural resources and its microclimates are encouraging a number of niche primary sector initiatives which are outlined in the action plan,” Ms Upston says.

“We want to see if we can grow these industries into something bigger as they could provide substantial future employment opportunities.”

Ms Upston said whitebaiting is iconic to the West Coast and there are only a few commercial whitebait operations.

“An initiative in the Plan will look at potential risks to the sustainability of whitebaiting, as well as at protecting spawning sites. This work has the long term goal of developing a sustainable wild whitebait fishery on the West Coast,” Ms Upston says

In addition, the government will look at options to change legislation enabling ongoing access to timber on Public Conservation Land that is felled as a result of natural events.

Another initiative will explore using a social enterprise approach to developing new opportunities for horticulture, food and beverage in Karamea, and potentially throughout the region.

The implementation of the Plan will be overseen by the West Coast Regional Growth Governance Group with support from central government’s Regional Growth Programme.

Background for editors

Regional economic development is a key part of the government’s Business Growth Agenda and the West Coast was included in the Government’s Regional Growth Programme in November 2015. The programme aims to increase jobs, income and investment in regional New Zealand. More information can be found at
Government Funding of Action Plan Initiatives
Action Contribution
Regional Research Institute $11,000,000
Replacement of one of the last single-lane bridges in the region - Ahaura Bridge on State Highway 7 between Greymouth and Springs Junction – with a new two lane bridge $15,000,000
Stony Creek Bridge $3,500,000
Development of the Oparara Arches as an iconic visitor attraction or building the Kawatiri (Charleston to Westport) Coastal Trail $3,000,000
Feasibility Tourism projects (Kawatiri, Oparara and Paparoa) $150,000
Future-proofing Punakaiki infrastructure $1,800,000
Funding the Digital Economy Action Plan $1,000,000
Extension of Hokitika Gorge track $850,000
Franz Josef future proofing against flooding and earthquakes investigation $220,000
Research into establishing a sustainable whitebait fishery, with co-funding from the region $125,000
Maori Tourism Strategy $70,000
Economic Development Arrangements on West Coast $70,000
Horticulture-based social enterprise initiative $35,000
Total $36,820,000

Regional contribution is: $1.890 million, including $1.175 million from Development West Coast


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Risk Of Being Short Changed By Pfizer

Who knew that the delivery of the Covid vaccines was going to be such a headache? All the predictions had been around the likely distribution problems. Would there be enough trained vaccinators around the country, a sufficient number of medical glass vials, a sufficiently robust “cold chain” to safely store the vaccines out in the field? All those issues remain. Currently though, production and delivery concerns are also hovering over whether the drug companies will live up to their contractual commitments, on time... More>>


National: Leader Of The Opposition’s State Of The Nation Speech

Kia ora and thank you for that welcome. It is a pleasure to be here. Thank you to the Rotary Club of Auckland and the EMA for hosting me at this first event in your centenary year. National and Rotary share many common principles, including community ... More>>


Ministry Of Health: Probable Case Of COVID-19 In A Returnee

The Ministry of Health is investigating a positive test result in a person who recently travelled from overseas and completed their stay in managed isolation in a facility in Auckland. In the case we are investigating and reporting today, the person had ... More>>


Oranga Tamariki: Chief Executive Grainne Moss Steps Down

Controversial Oranga Tamariki chief executive Grainne Moss has decided to step down. More>>


USA: Prime Minister Congratulates President Joe Biden On His Inauguration

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter ... More>>


Government: New Zealand And China Sign FTA Upgrade

Trade Ministers for New Zealand and China today signed an upgrade to the free trade agreement between the two countries. “This modernises our free trade agreement and ensures it will remain fit for purpose for another decade,” Minister for Trade ... More>>

Oxfam NZ: Wealth Of New Zealand’s Richest Person’s Soars By $3.4bn Since Beginning Of Pandemic

New Zealand’s richest citizen, Graeme Hart, has seen his fortune increase by NZ$3,494,333,333 since March 2020 – a sum equivalent to over half a million New Zealanders receiving a cheque for NZ$6,849 each, reveals a new analysis from Oxfam today. The New Zealand ... More>>


Government: New Public Housing Plan Announced

RT HON JACINDA ARDERN HON DR MEGAN WOODS The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government ... More>>

Government: Pre-Departure Testing Extended To All Passengers To New Zealand

To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. More>>





InfoPages News Channels