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Local Led Change and Opotiki

For decades, Ōpōtiki has featured as one of New Zealand’s most deprived communities. However, locally its future is now seen quite differently.

For the last decade, integrated community-led planning championed by iwi and the District Council has been focusing on enabling community transformation through aquaculture and tourism. One of Opotiki’s flagship projects is the Ōpōtiki Harbour Transformation Project which comprises two interdependent projects:

  1. The country’s largest offshore marine farm – with iwi as the majority shareholder.
  2. The other is a largescale infrastructure project to improve the navigability of the Ōpōtiki Harbour entrance to enable onshore processing and the creation of several hundred local jobs and new support industries.

By focusing on building local leadership, engaging local people and fostering collaboration across sectors and partners in multiple levels and places, the conditions for substantial long term transformation and change in Ōpōtiki are being created – what happens here is significant for the whole of New Zealand.

For more information on the Opotiki harbour project.