28 Nov 2013

Maori 2degrees shareholder puzzled at Govt decision

8:08 am on 28 November 2013

A Maori shareholder in the mobile phone company 2degrees is perplexed as to why the Government ignored the Waitangi Tribunal's recommendation to allocate a portion of radio spectrum to Maori.

Mavis Mullins.

Mavis Mullins. Photo: RNZ

Last week the Government auctioned off the last remaining blocks of the 700 megahertz band, despite the Maori Spectrum Coalition also appealing for an allocation.

Hautaki Trust holds a minority share in 2degrees and trust chair Mavis Mullins says she commends the Maori Spectrum Coalition for the effort it made on behalf of Maori to get a portion of the radio band.

She says the Government has missed a lucrative opportunity based on the success of Maori shareholdings in 2degrees.

Ms Mullins says she is puzzled and disappointed at the Government's decision.

She says the Hautaki Trust believes it has a made a big impact with the launch of 2degrees Mobile because Maori have been able to bring $500 million of offshore investment into New Zealand through a global financial crisis.

Mavis Mullins, of Rangitane and Te Atihau descent, says the mobile phone company has also been able to create 700 new jobs with its new entity.

She says the fact that the Government didn't take those successful elements into account and how Maori can deliver is upsetting.