Maori and Indigenous business leaders join forces to solve common challenges

Maori and Indigenous business leaders join forces to solve common challenges

Indigenous Affairs Economic Development
Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

The Indigenous Business Sector Group meet to discuss cross-Tasman opportunities for Indigenous business.

Business leaders from Australia and New Zealand (NZ) met in Sydney earlier this month for the second meeting of the Indigenous Business Sector Group as part of the Australian New Zealand Leadership Forum (ANZLF).

After officially forming in New Zealand in January 2018, the Group is committed to working together to solve common challenges facing Maori, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-owned businesses.

On 7-8 June 2018, Traci Houpapa, CEO of the Federation of Maori Authorities, led a small delegation of Maori business owners and organisations to Australia to meet with her Group co-chair Nyunggai Warren Mundine and other Indigenous business leaders. Delegates discussed a broad range of issues, including Indigenous women in business, the availability of capital to Indigenous businesses, political and industry influence of the Indigenous community, cross-Tasman trade and Indigenous agricultural expertise. These issues will feed into a three-year plan of action.

Participants agreed to pursue actions that will support Indigenous women in business and provide opportunities for cross-Tasman trade. Potential actions include establishing an Australian/NZ Indigenous Women’s Business Network, business trade delegations and developing support for Indigenous businesses to identify trade opportunities.  

Outside of the boardroom, the group attended an evening Tribal Warrior Cruise on Sydney Harbour with 20 local Indigenous businesses. To end the trip, the group participated in an Indigenous business visit to Pacific Services Group Holdings in Sydney to learn from a local business.

The ANZLF brings together Australian and NZ leaders to discuss mutual prosperity in the global economy. The need for the Indigenous Business Sector Group was identified following a panel discussion on Indigenous business at the 2016 ANZLF conference.