Te Kāhui a Kiwa - driving awareness and dialogue on Indigenous trade

27 June 2023

Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts
Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts, the venue of Te Kāhui a Kiwa.

An impressive line-up of Indigenous and international speakers will meet this week to share their knowledge and expertise on the importance of Indigenous trade in gaining benefits from the free trade agreement, the Comprehensive and Progressive agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

Over two days panel discussions and workshops will enable speakers and attendees to explore what can be done to advance Indigenous aspirations for self-determination and wellbeing through trade.

The University of Waikato will host ‘Te Kāhui a Kiwa’ at its Hamilton campus on Wednesday 28 and Thursday 29 June 2023, on behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as part of Aotearoa New Zealand’s host activities in its role as Chair of the CPTPP this year.

“The conference will focus our attention on a transformational view of Indigenous trade, with our speakers and attendees invited to share their thoughts on how the CPTPP is already, and can in the future, help to realise their aspirations,” says Dr Jason Mika, Associate Professor of the University of Waikato’s Te Kotahi Research Institute and Waikato Management School.

Dr Mika notes that a te ao Māori approach to trade is different to a European one, with greater attention and mana placed on forming deep and mutually respectful relationships with trade partners to deliver long term benefits to both partners and their wider communities.

“The conference provides an opportunity to hear from the people intrinsically involved in these processes and deeply committed to supporting positive Indigenous trade outcomes.

“I look forward to excellent kōrero to ensure that we meet our Tiriti obligations and can explore the exciting possibilities for embedding an indigenous trade approach into our future together.”

The conference has been designed to support involvement from rangatahi (young people), wāhine (women), and kaumātua (elders) engaged in trade as community leaders, entrepreneurs, exporters, and policy makers.

Speakers and panellists are expected to present provocative and challenging points of view, as well as taking part in a discussion that prioritises constructive, innovative, and beneficial solutions to advance Indigenous aspirations for mana motuhake (self determination) and wellbeing through trade, in order to develop a shared view for the future.

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