Tuesday, December 23, 2014

'One the first day of Xmas my government gave to me, a Maaori ecooooonomyyy'

The latest reports on 'our economy' are out. This one from Kinnect/MPI finds that not only is MPI brilliant at working with (selected) Maori, there remain issues over governance, scale and capability, specifically:
  • a need to consolidate multiple owners with small shareholdings into mandated governance entities with effective decision making;
  • economic scale to support profitable agribusiness;
  • and the capability to grow agribusiness productivity and profitability.
Another report (PriceWaterhouseCoopers/MPI December 2014, same link as above) has some interesting tables on Maori land use and potential for improvement. Note over a quarter of Maori Freehold Land (MFL) is in natural forest and a further 8% in plantation forest. Conversion to dairying remains the sexy beast in the picture... 

The purpose of this report was to confirm the value of additional work into converting and otherwise innovating on Maori land (the original impetus for this came from the BERL reports of 2011 I've posted on before). The Benfit Cost Ratio of 'interventions' are tabulated below, by sector:

A figure below 1 means you technically 'lose' money by intervention.

We can quibble about methodology till the cows come home but dairying remains the go to approach for growing our/the economy (although note horticultures high BCR though against a very low percentage of MFL).

So, business-as-usual.

Given the now confirmed decline of our water quality, including our iconic beaches (remember when iwi/Maori were the risk to these strips of foreshore and seabed?!), there are considerable costs and risks associated with dairy. Further, given the urban character of our rangatahi and the struggle we have with the education system, how to we get our people into secure employment when the trend is less security?

No answers, just more patai.

Meri kirihimete tatou katoa!
Simon Lambert


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