The NZ/UK Free Trade Agreement (FTA) has been a significant win for Māori and Te Taumata believes it will pave the way for even more fruitful trade negotiations with the European Union in the coming months.

Te Taumata played an integral role in the negotiations for the NZ/UK FTA, which was agreed in principle last month, ensuring Māori interests were not only represented but given prominence in the deal. (Read more about this in our previous pānui.)

Te Taumata has spent more than a year hosting face to face regional hui with our whānau, taking that kōrero back to trade officials.

International trade presents untold opportunities for Māori enterprise and Te Taumata continues to instigate and lead conversations to guarantee our people have access to those opportunities.

Te Taumata has recently written to New Zealand ministers, Damien O’Connor (Minister of Trade) and Nanaia Mahuta (Minister of Foreign Affairs), outlining the NZ/UK FTA process and its significance for Māori, as well as the importance of finalising the indigenous chapter.

In the letter, Te Taumata says it is encouraged by the inclusion of the indigenous chapter and that it is a positive and important step forward. However, more work needs to be done to finalise the text.

Moving forward, Te Taumata has already initiated discussions with European Union (EU) Ambassador, Her Excellency Nina Obermaier, to advance discussions towards a new NZ/EU FTA – an agreement Te Taumata believes will dwarf the NZ/UK FTA.

Te Taumata is well placed again to be a voice for Māori in these negotiations.

Te Taumata is now planning regional hui on trade for the next 12 months to facilitate further face to face kōrero between trade ministers, negotiators and our people.