New Zealand and Canada’s Foreign Ministers have pledged to establish a deeper relationship between the two countries on priorities for Indigenous Peoples.
During her visit to Ottawa, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Associate Minister for Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta met with Canada’s Minister of Indigenous Services, Patty Hajdu and Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, Marc Miller to further expand and develop the positive relationship between both countries.
Aotearoa New Zealand and Canada are uniquely bound together by strong and growing relationships between Indigenous Peoples, presenting significant opportunities for Māori, First Nations, Inuit, and Métis to connect on business, trade, social and cultural opportunities, Minister Mahuta said.
“There is special significance in building a “relationship bridge” between Indigenous Peoples, and we welcome the opportunity to meet and discuss how the economic, cultural, and social links between Indigenous Peoples in Aotearoa New Zealand and Canada could be fostered, as well as trade and investment opportunities for Indigenous businesses and Small Medium Enterprises,” she said.
Minister Hajdu noted that “COVID-19 has significantly impacted Indigenous Peoples and business in both our countries. Working closely with Māori, First Nations, Inuit and Métis partners, we can share best practices and innovative approaches to COVID-19 recovery.”
“Canada and Aotearoa New Zealand share a commitment to working with Indigenous Peoples to forge a better future. By working collaboratively, we will bring Indigenous Peoples in Canada and in Aotearoa New Zealand together to promote and facilitate cultural and economic cooperation, in line with broader reconciliation efforts,” said Minister Miller.
New Zealand’s Te Puni Kōkiri (Ministry for Māori Development), Crown Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs, and Indigenous Services Canada will work closely with Indigenous partners to ensure an Indigenous-led and government enabled approaches going forward, the Ministers said.