Mangatu is “thriving” – but hey, Jones has got to invest our money somewhere so let’s give them a fillip anyway

Its businesses are “thriving”, according to the Mangatu Maori Incorporation website.

That was before Shane Jones’ arrival in the Gisborne region this week to distribute several million dollars of public money – among other recipients, to the thriving Mangatu Maori Incorporation.

He invited other Maori – sorry, he encouraged other Maori – to have a lick at the rich swill he is providing through the One Billion Trees Programme:

 ” … I am encouraging more Māori to come forward to partner with the Government through this initiative,” Shane Jones said.

The One Billion Trees Fund, launched in November 2018,  offers grants to landowners – particularly Māori and farmers – to encourage integration of trees into existing land use.

“It will create economic, social and environmental benefits and support Maori to realise the potential of their land.”

Having plenty of your own money should not be an impediment to applying, it seems.

The Mangatu incorporation’s website gives a measure of what “thriving” means.

The latest financial results we could find there were for the year to September 30 2017.

These show a net profit before tax of $13.9m (compared with $18.6m the previous year) and net assets of $193.6m (up from  $183m).

Key points of note, the report says, are –

• The Mangatu Blocks Group continues to remain profitable
• The growth in the Mangatu Group asset base continues the vision to build
and grow the ancestral lands and associated business and assets for the
benefit of current and future owners of Mangatu.
• Operating cash flow continues its strong trend.
• Distributions to owners remain sustainable and continue at healthy levels. 

More generally, the incorporation tells us:

Our commitment to the sustainable management of our shareholders assets has seen us become a key player in the economic outcomes of our region – contributing to the prosperity of our people without compromising our roots and identity.

Mangatu manages resources in three key sectors: agribusiness, forestry and viticulture.

But we may suppose the incorporation’s managers could do with a helping hand from the rest of us, in their sustainable management, and they are not too proud to decline the  $450,000 of taxpayers’ money which Jones brought with him on his journey to their region.

Whakaoratia te mana o te Waiapu was given a bigger handout.  We have yet to check out the state of the finances of this outfit, a partnership between Te Wiwi Nati Trust and Te Riu o Waiapu Trust Partnership.   

Jones generosity was registered by the Point of Order Trough Monitor, which noted these announcements:

11 JULY 2019

Waiapu catchment gets major boost from One Billion Trees Fund

Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced the One Billion Trees Fund is providing a boost of up to $5 million to the East Cape to address key environmental issues in the Waiapu Catchment.

Led by Whakaoratia te mana o te Waiapu – a partnership between Te Wiwi Nati Trust and Te Riu o Waiapu Trust Partnership – a package of four projects will be delivered over the next ten years.

“With support from the One Billion Trees Fund, this partnership is a significant step forward to restoring and future proofing one of East Cape’s most rapidly eroding catchments,” Shane Jones said.

“We have a duty to communities in ‘at risk’ catchments like the Waiapu to do more. If nothing is done, there will be significant social, economic and environmental costs for the community.

The projects include the construction of a series of debris dams across the Waiapu catchment, a river corridor project, establishment of a nursery to support riparian planting, and capacity building of employees in the region.

Erosion control and better water quality, protection of the catchment, and social and economic gains for iwi and landowners, are the objectives.

The Gisborne District Council will provide a $1 million in-kind contribution to the project.

The Waiapu Catchment

The Waiapu River has the highest amount of sediment per volume of any river in New Zealand and one of the highest in the world.

Approximately 8 hectares of productive flats are lost annually to erosion. If nothing is done, it would have cost approximately $28 million in lost productive returns and land by 2028.

If erosion remains untreated in key areas, models suggest there is the potential for current erosion and sedimentation to double by 2050.

The catchment would experience even greater physical damage, the area’s agricultural production would decline, and social deprivation would worsen.

11 JULY 2019

One Billion Trees supporting a sustainable future for Mangatu

Forestry Minister Shane Jones announced the One Billion Trees Fund will provide $450,000 to Mangatu Blocks Incorporation, the guardian of Te Aitanga a Mahaki ancestral lands and manager of 48,100 hectares for its 5,500 shareholders. Over half of this land is in pastoral farming.

“The Trust has identified areas where they can integrate trees into their existing farming operations – a key goal of the One Billion Trees Fund,” Shane Jones said.

“I am pleased to be able to partner with Mangatu to realise the potential of their land through funding that will establish over 240 hectares of exotic and native trees.

Mangatu is committed to planting or supporting reversion of over 3000 hectares of marginal land for environmental and economic benefits.

“We’ll also see the Mangatu trial ecosourcing their own Mānuka seedlings from local sources,” Jones said.

“Working with Māori to protect and enhance their whenua is an important part of the One Billion Trees Programme and I am encouraging more Māori to come forward to partner with the Government through this initiative,” Shane Jones said.

Two grants have been approved for Mangatu Incorporation:

Mangatawa Te Hua Te Apiti

This includes supporting 115 hectares of radiata pine and 2.29 hectares of regeneration.

This grant has committed funding for $202,010.

Waihirere Station

This includes supporting 119.26ha of radiate pine, 11 hectares of eucalyptus, and 3.4 hectares Mānuka.

This grant has committed funding for $247,643.

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