First Regional Partnerships formed with Wanganui, Marlborough and Rotorua regions

  • Jim Anderton
Deputy Prime Minister

"This Labour Alliance Government is committed to developing our regions and I am pleased to see the announcement of the first three regional partnership agreements," says Acting Prime Minister Jim Anderton.

"The work that these first three regions have already done to build their local economies and form partnerships is excellent and means that the Government can work immediately with the, Wanganui, Ruapehu and Rangitikei region, the Marlborough region and the Rotorua region.

"I visited Wanganui, Ruapehu and Rangitikei only last week, with local MP Jill Pettis, and I am pleased to see this region is in the first three partnerships to be announced. I know from my meetings in Wanganui on Friday how well, under the chairmanship of Mayor Chas Poynter, the local authorities, local iwi and other groups are making progress. They have already got a working group, local commitment and innovative ideas to improve their region. With this funding, Rotorua can now build on the board development plan they have and Marlborough can start to develop their plan.

"The Regional Partnerships Programme is part of the tool kit of schemes to improve economic activity within Industry New Zealand, the Government's jobs machine. The programme will support regions working with Government to create sustainable jobs and business. This Labour Alliance Government is committed to helping regions to create security and opportunity for their people," said Jim Anderton.

There will be a number of similar partnerships announced next year, judging by the 137 expressions of interest which went to Industry New Zealand.

Most regions are still working through the details of their proposals with Industry New Zealand and Jim Anderton says he is looking forward to more being announced next year. Several regions are very close and are likely to be announced in the February round of approvals.

Regions were able to apply for funding in 3 components:
·Up to $100,000 for Strategy Development (total of $8 million applied for)
·Up to $100,000 for Building Capability (total of $8 million applied for)
·Up to $2,000,000 for major regional initiatives (total of $93 million applied for)

"The total budget for the Regional Partnerships Programme is $33.750 million (incl. GST) over the next three years, including $5.6 million in the current financial year," said Jim Anderton.

Media Enquiries: Sam Fisher [press secretary] 025 714 209, 04 471 9289
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material from Industry NZ

20 December 2000


Craig Boyce, Acting Chairman of the Board of Industry New Zealand today announced the first funding approvals under the Government's new Regional Partnerships Programme.

These approvals will support the development and implementation of economic development plans in

· The Wanganui, Ruapehu and Rangitikei region
· The Marlborough region and
· The Rotorua region

Applications to support major regional initiatives arising from these planning processes may be submitted and considered later.

Work will now be done to confirm the details of formal funding agreements so that money can actually be paid out in the New Year.

Craig Boyce said he is delighted that the first group of approvals has been processed so quickly. "These approvals have been made in advance of our planned schedule - the regional groups concerned made a good job of their proposals so we moved fast to get them through the approvals process before Christmas.

"Industry NZ staff are continuing to work with other regions as they work towards submitting proposals for funding assistance. Regions will not miss out on the possibility of funding support because they take some more time to submit their applications. Money has been budgeted over the next three years. However, we are keen to support soundly based regional initiatives as soon as possible," said Craig Boyce.

Several regions are very close to completing their formal proposals, and these will be considered in the next round of approvals in February.

For further information contact:

Suzanne Cookson
Industry NZ
Phone (04) 495 5089, or 021 264 7076
Background of the Regional Partnerships Programme

The Regional Partnership Programme is about broadly based ranges of groups within each region working in partnership with each other and with central government to:

· Develop a well-thought out and inclusive strategy (Strategic Planning)
· Build the capability to put the strategy into practice (Building Capability); and
· Identify major initiatives led by the region and supported by central Government (Major Regional Initiatives)

Like other Industry New Zealand programmes, the Regional Partnership Programme aims to facilitate and promote effective and sustainable long-term development. The budget for the programme is $5.625 million (this year) and $11.25 million and $16.875 million in subsequent years.

Regional Partnerships

Applications must be supported by a broad partnership of private and public sector groups in the region. The partnership should include groups such as business representatives, local government, iwi, economic development agencies, community organisations and educational institutions.

Expressions of Interest

As a first step, Expressions of Interest (EoIs) were invited in the programme and 137 were received by the deadline of 29 September 2000.

The EoIs covered most areas of the country. They included some broadly based and inclusive initiatives of the kind that the RPP is designed to encourage and support, but many were sector or project specific initiatives.

A number of organisations that submitted EoIs have also sought funding under other programmes from Industry New Zealand and/or other agencies.

Formal proposals

Industry New Zealand is now working with regions to identify regional groupings, including a lead agency, and to encourage and assist with the development, or refinement, of applications for funding assistance.

When the Regional Partnership Programme team judges a proposal meets the criteria of the programme, it goes before an Approvals Committee. This group consists of representatives of Industry New Zealand, the Ministry of Economic Development, Te Puni Kokiri, and two independent people with regional development expertise. When it is satisfied with a proposal the group recommends funding approval to a sub-committee of the Industry NZ Board.

The first round of approvals was planned for early 2001, but several regions were ready with sound proposals so these were considered now.
Further approval rounds will take place in February and May/June next year.