Unlocking New Regional Economic Growth Opportunities for Taranaki

Taranaki’s Regional Economic Development Strategy Lead Team is proud to officially launch Make Way for Taranaki – a project to prepare an economic strategy and plan of action for the region for the next 10 years.

It’s a ‘Team Taranaki’ approach drawn from local businesses and organisations, iwi, and central and local government. Economics are important but feedback so far is that themes of well-being, lifestyle and quality of life are just as important to Taranaki people.   

“The Make Way for Taranaki project will focus on unlocking the best opportunities for regional economic growth and the ongoing success of the region. I’m pleased to work alongside a team of talented and enthusiastic individuals,” says Lead Team Chair Peter Tennent.

The Taranaki Mayoral Forum is the sponsor of the project.

“The point of difference in this project is the focus on a whole-of-region approach with business and government working as one,” says South Taranaki District Mayor Ross Dunlop.

“The region’s Mayoral Forum is keen to see everyone working as one team towards successful outcomes that the region can grab with both hands.”

The project has involved interviews, workshops and focus groups with Taranaki people. Statistical analysis and other research will be undertaken. Once completed, it is likely that hundreds of people will have been involved in the exercise.

“The work to date has involved many conversations with dozens of Taranaki people and the same messages keep emerging – Taranaki has huge potential beyond its known dairy and energy sectors,” says New Plymouth District Mayor Neil Holdom.

Taranaki Regional Council Chair David MacLeod agrees: “This project will be about identifying emerging growth opportunities and identifying future industries – some of which may still simply be ‘bright ideas’. Technology and markets are moving fast and so must we,” he says.

At its first meeting, the Lead Team considered a draft list of opportunities that have emerged from research to date. They have identified a preferred ‘direction of travel’ for the Make Way for Taranaki strategy that will set the tone for work over the next few months. The final Action Plan is due for release in October 2017.

Māori will be a key contributor.

“Māori are a major emerging force in our economy and therefore will play a key role in future prosperity of our region. We’re pleased to be part of this planning while at the same time acknowledging the Te Ao Māori (the Māori World),” says Te Kotahitanga o Te Atiawa Chair Liana Poutu.

The Mayor of Stratford District sums up the work of Make Way for Taranaki: “The region is on the cusp of unlocking some amazing opportunities, so Make Way for Taranaki New Zealand ’cause here we come!” says Mayor Neil Volzke.

The Lead Team is: Peter Tennent (Chair), Neil Holdom, David MacLeod, Bronwyn Muir, Dan Radcliffe, Robin Brockie, Mark Robinson, Scott Walls, Kevin Murphy, Sophie Braggins, Andrew Clennett, Wharehoka Wano, Te Pahunga (Marty) Davis, Liana Poutu, Al Morrison. 

15 May 2017