Fletcher Tabuteau, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development
The Wairoa community is set to benefit from Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) investment in digital connectivity, business expansion, roading, and skills and employment initiatives, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today.
The Wairoa district will receive $9.1 million from a wider PGF investment package of $68.3 million for the Hawke’s Bay.
“The PGF is committed to lifting the productivity of towns like Wairoa that face high unemployment and an ageing population. The investments announced today will bring some relief to the much-needed infrastructure needs that will help this rural community lift its social and economic prospects,” Fletcher Tabuteau said.
The investments announced for Wairoa today are:
- Wāiroa High Productivity Motor Vehicle (HPMV) upgrades – $2.2 million
- Ngati Pāhauwera Horticulture, Forestry, and Land Enhancement project – $6.5 million (PGF Whenua Māori fund investment of $5.5 million and Te Uru Rakau One Billion Trees programme of $1 million.)
- The Limery, Wairoa Facility Expansion – $355,000
- QRS – Growing Employment opportunities and enhancing organisation capability – $60,000
- Connecting 11 marae in the region to reliable and fast broadband
The Wāiroa High Productivity Motor Vehicle (HPMV) project brings roads up to standards that HPMV’s can operate on, and prioritises proposals that result in fewer trucks on roads, reduced wear and tear on road infrastructure, and increases in regional productivity.
The PGF will also work with Māori landowners in Wairoa through the PGF’s Whenua Māori fund and through Te Uru Rakau’s One Billion Trees programme.
“Our $5.5 million investment in Ngāti Pāhauwera Commercial Development Ltd has the potential to convert and develop 82 hectares of flat, unproductive land into productive horticulture over the next three years.
“The project will look to employ up to 40 local people through the development of this land.
“The PGF will further its commitment to Māori in the region through connecting 11 marae to the internet.
“By digitally connecting 11 marae in the region, this investment will enable locals to seize business and education opportunities while helping whānau connect with their iwi. These marae will be connected as part of the PGF local digital connectivity funding package of $21 million which helps connect marae to the internet.
The PGF will also enable a local business to expand its operations in the region.
“The Limery is a prime example of smart local people maximising the opportunities that horticulture brings to the region. That’s why the PGF is proud to help enable the facility to expand its operations, which will create three full-time jobs on top of the four already there, as well as increase the number of seasonal workers.
“Today’s announcements will bring employment and improved social and economic outcomes for people in Wairoa and the wider region, and this is what the PGF is all about.
“Wairoa has been a town that has not only faced significant economic and social challenges, it has often found it difficult to be heard by central government. It is personally pleasing to see the needs of Wairoa being taken seriously by this Government.
“I look forward to continuing this important work with all the key stakeholders in the Wairoa community,” Fletcher Tabuteau said.