A symbol of goodwill and commitment
8 March 2007
Fisheries Minister Jim Anderton is enthusiastic about a new fisheries partnership established with iwi organisations in the Tasman / Marlborough area. "The Memorandum of Understanding signed with the eight iwi that make up the Te Tau Ihu Forum is an important step forward in establishing a collaborative working relationship," Jim Anderton said.
He was speaking at a ceremony at Omaka Marae, Blenheim, which celebrated the signing of the Memorandum between the Te Tau Ihu of Te Waka a Maui fisheries forum and the Ministry of Fisheries.
“It has taken two years to get to this stage,” said Jim Anderton. "This shows the level of commitment and goodwill the forum members and my Ministry have put into developing the formal relationship we celebrate today."
The forum provides an opportunity for iwi across the top of the South Island to address fisheries issues in their individual rohe, as well as working together to define common fisheries values and goals.
"When someone goes down to the sea to exercise their customary fishing rights, the issues to which rohe applies and how the rules apply to manage the fishery will be clearer," Jim Anderton said. "Everyone gains from that, because it means better management for the long haul, and better opportunity to use the resource for those who have a customary entitlement."
Iwi fisheries forums such as Te Tau Ihu are a way of addressing the treaty responsibilities that result from the 1992 Fisheries Deed of Settlement and the Fisheries Act 1996. Iwi and hapu in other regions are also seeking to establish their own regional groups.
"The parties that signed the Treaty could not have envisaged what modern society would look like 167 years later, but when they made that Treaty they must have contemplated agreements like this would be needed to make the relationship work," Jim Anderton said.
Te Tau Ihu of Te Waka a Maui fisheries forum comprises representatives of eight iwi organisations across the top of the South Island: Ngati Apa ki te Waipounamu Trust; Ngati Koata Trust; Ngati Rarua Iwi Trust; Ngati Tama Manawhenua Ki Te Tau Ihu Trust; Ngati Toa Rangatira Manawhenua Ki Te Tau Ihu Trust; Te Atiawa Manawhenua Ki Te Tau Ihu Trust; Te Runanga A Rangitane O Wairau; and Te Runanga o Ngati Kuia Trust.