Thursday May 25, 2017   Last updated 09:39AM
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Foreshore claims not real problem says English
Waateanews.com

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Prime Minister Bill English says he expects very few of the claims for customary ownership of marine and coastal areas will succeed.

More than 500 claims were lodged with the High Court or directly with the government by the deadline at the start of April, spelling out the historical and cultural connections people have to particular stretches of coastline or fisheries.

The process was promoted by National and the Maori Party as an improvement on Labour’s Foreshore and Seabed Act, which would have allowed an open ended process to claim rights.

But Mr English says the legal hurdles are high, as iwi who have been through the process have found.

"The business of making claims which you know can't get through I suppose makes some general political point but we have found you don't make progress with that kind of high handed symbolism. We make progress by solving real problems for real people," he says.

Mr English says where National has made process is working with the Iwi Leaders Group on areas like vulnerable children, Maori land law reform, and iwi participation in decision making on natural resources.

BILL ENGLISH INTERVIEW

 

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