Te Arawa will consider supporting future mineral exploration following a meeting with Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges.
The Petroleum and Minerals division of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment is considering submissions on its plan to offer permits for exploration in the Taupo Volcanic Zone.
That includes Te Arawa tribal boundaries in parts of the Rotorua district.
Te Arawa kaumatua Toby Curtis says Mr Bridges has told Te Arawa descendants it is unlikely mineral exploration will get under way in the next five years because companies will be required to apply for consents, and that will take time.
Dr Curtis says Mr Bridges has essentially given Te Arawa more time to consider whether it wants to be involved in the development and operation of mineral exploration.
The tribe will set up a group to monitor mineral sector activities.