One hundred and fifty jobs will be created from a new Industrial Development in Kawerau.
The initiative received $2 million from the government's regional growth fund. The forestry region is being hit hard by rising unemployment but the initiative has given Kawerau a boost.
Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says, “This area will be developed into an area where business can be created. $2 million is the first allocation of funding for this to be achieved.”
This land belongs to the Māori Trust Pūtauaki and will be part of a larger development that will see the establishment of an industrial hub.
Kirwaitingi Rei, chairwomen of Pūtauaki Trust says, “This land belongs to Te Pahipoto, Te Rangitūkehu of Ngāti Awa we have been working hard on this project.”
Michael Barnett who is the chairman of Toi EDA who has helped put this development into place says, “Part of the project for us is being able to create a hub that provides access for people to work for people to set up their businesses and when you do that you start building communities because businesses attracted people and people build communities.”
The new funding will go into construction, building additional road and rail infrastructure around the industrial subdivision which will also house a container terminal.
“We want our descendants, those living here in Kawerau and the wider Bay of Plenty to have jobs so we have been working for a long time with the local council on this project,” says Rei.
One hundred hectares of Māori land under the Pūtauaki Trust has been allocated for the industrial hub.