3 Aug 2015

Report sees potential in Manawatū-Whanganui

8:20 am on 3 August 2015

A report released today highlights agricultural opportunities for Māori in the Manawatū-Whanganui region.

Cows in Rangiwahia, Manawatu.

Cows in Rangiwahia, Manawatu. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

The report identified the region as an innovation hub with development strengths in areas of biotechnology, agricultural technology, animal health and food technology.

The Māori development minister said the report identified 190,000 hectares of Māori freehold land, some of which is under-developed.

Te Ururoa Flavell said this land presented many opportunities for Māori.

"Sheep and beef, tourism, forestry - all of those sit in front of the people to develop and this has given them an opportunity of some importance in a drive to get some economic development moving and utilise the opportunities in front of everyone."

He said the current reforms to Te Ture Whenua Māori Act will empower Māori land owners to take more control of the use of Māori land.

"There is a real opportunity in the Manawatū - Whanganui region to lift employment, productivity and incomes, and I'm determined to make the most of that opportunity."

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