As Minister for Local Government and Māori Development, I have the opportunity to meet people and listen to their aspirations to contribute to the regional economic growth and social wellbeing. Iwi Māori, Councils, Industry and local business are working together in a regional partnership to help inform central government decisions through the Provincial Growth Fund.
It was clear that a lot of evidence had been collected to inform the strategy and assess how sector and sub-regional based investments would deliver the types of outcomes that would shift intergenerational dependence, grow tourism, attract private sector investment and improve social well-being across the Eastern Bay.
The overwhelming message was clear that the long-term benefits of central, local and private investment would see an immediate change in enterprise growth, employment and skills training and community development. In communities like Kawerau, Murupara, Minginui, Whakatane and Opotiki this approach would demonstrate to locals and their young people that you can live, train and work in a great region where there are a whole lot of opportunities being created through smart strategies and strategic investment.
Well done on taking a strategic approach to promoting regional opportunity.