The Te Tai Tokerau region is significant in Māori and Polynesian history. It is the original landing place for several dozen waka and contains several points of early European contact and colonisation.
Within the economy, pre-colonisation evidence shows active trade and wise management of natural resources including sustainable horticulture and fisheries, the oranga (wellness) of Māori, and the interdependent relationship between tangata (people) and the whenua (land).
Tai Tokerau Northland has a strong Māori population and approximately 200,000 Māori claim it as their turangawaewae ('place to stand'). However, the challenges of balance between European settlers and the principles of Tai Tokerau Māori are well documented and describe, for many reasons, a downturn in successful Māori influence on the economy.
A Māori Economic Growth strategy, ‘He Tangata, He Whenua, He Oranga’ has been developed by the Tai Tokerau Iwi Chief Executive Consortium. Northland Inc worked with the Consortium to support the strategy's launch and implementation. 'He Tangata, He Whenua, He Oranga' is proudly ‘iwi-led’, and seeks to apply a regional framework to grow the Tai Tokerau Māori economy, strengthen local level strategic alignment plans and activities, and draw relevant connections to other economic growth plans and activities at a national level.
Northland Inc is dedicated to taking meaningful steps working with Māori for better outcomes for Māori in the community and in business. Across the region there is a collective desire for change, with a future that truly embraces the importance of Tai Tokerau Māori and their significant contribution to the region's economy, yesterday, today, and in the future.