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We quickly learnt, from listening to the voices of people in prison, whānau, academics, community-based experts, our staff and partners that Hōkai Rangi - its direction, the change it is designed to bring about  - should not just apply to Māori, but to everyone.

I would like to begin by thanking each and every one of you here today. You play a hugely important role in the tourism system in Aotearoa. Without all of you creating authentic, high quality visitor experiences, tours and packages across the country, we wouldn’t have the visitor economy we enjoy today.

I just want to start by acknowledging our hosts, Kāuru Education Group, led by Te Whatanui Winiata, and also our three kaumatua from the Winiata family: Whatarangi Winiata, Francie Winiata and Margaret Winiata.

Our plan is to make sure the benefits of tourism are realised for our country and our people, while managing the impacts. Today I’m very pleased to announce the latest part of that plan. The Government will be investing nearly $12 million in co-funding from the Tourism Infrastructure Fund to help 25 councils around New Zealand make the most out of the opportunities tourism can bring.

Today’s announcement is part of this Government’s commitment to tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand and to taking mental health seriously.

We need to transform the settings and the framework of the education system. But we must also support the people within the education system. That is what restarting Te Kotahitanga was about.

“Kara Puketapu began to call iwi representatives to Wellington: Tribal leaders, old and young, men and women, from each of the ten districts of Māoridom … We got into what I call organic policies—policies that actually came up from the people … Out of all that dynamic was born Te Kōhanga Reo.“

The Year of Tourism is an important opportunity to showcase the depth of our people-to-people connections. It’s a time to reflect on our relationship, share in each other’s culture through travel and look to the future, strengthening our already deep ties.

I’m proud to be here today announcing the Government’s investment, through the Provincial Growth Fund, in two key Whangarei tourism projects.

It is my pleasure to be here with you all this morning, at the inaugural Tourism Policy School conference. It’s fantastic to see the University of Otago assemble such a distinguished audience from across the tourism sector.

I am delighted to officially open the 63rd New Zealand Motor Caravan Association National Rally and Annual General Meeting.

I’m proud to be standing here today, as both Tourism Minister and Member of Parliament for Te Tai Tokerau, to announce the Government’s investment, through the Provincial Growth Fund, in these key Far North projects.