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Space for Fish: Windfall Pay Off for Maori's

NEW ZEALAND - The New Zealand government has promised to pay the sum of NZ$100m to Maori settlers for the commercial aquaculture use of their native space.

The one-off payment from Government settles an agreement reached in 2004 to pay Maori for the commercial use of aquaculture space - for which compensation was never granted, reports Alex Van Wel in Stuff news agency.

According to him, under that deal, Maori were promised the equivalent of 20% of pre-existing space and 20% of future space.

It was only meant to be done by 2014, but The Press has learned that it has been brought forward on the instigation of Iwi in the top of the South Island (Te Tau Ihu).

Work by the Ministry of Fisheries and the Office of Treaty Settlements made the agreement of an early settlement possible.

Ellen Hardy

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