Skip to main content


“Understanding the profile of our international Māori population is an important component to realising the potential of the Māori economy,” says Te Puni Kōkiri Chief Executive Michelle Hippolite.
Te Puni Kōkiri and Kea New Zealand are working together to create opportunities to connect Māori businesses to the large international network of New Zealanders based outside of Aotearoa New Zealand, and to better understand the Māori expats among them.
Kea’s five-yearly ‘census’ Every Kiwi Counts 2011 shows there is strong economic potential from expat Māori. According to the on-line survey of over 15,000 New Zealanders living offshore, Māori expats are highly successful, very well educated and say they have the ability to help NZ businesses from overseas.
Sue Watson, Global CEO for Kea says: “The expat Māori population are an untapped resource of opportunity for New Zealand’s economic development. They are extremely well connected and in many cases actively looking to invest in, partner with, or acquire businesses here in New Zealand.”
Te Puni Kōkiri and Kea have arranged a networking opportunity for Māori businesses to engage with the survey findings and to consider the challenges and opportunities that Kea provides helping exporters launch into international markets. The function is being hosted by AUT University’s Manukau Campus today.
AUT Vice Chancellor Derek McCormack says: “Hosting this event at the AUT Manukau Campus is particularly significant given the high numbers of young Māori in the region. A broader vision of potential career opportunities and the connections to enable them will be a powerful motivator for young Māori to gain qualifications that fast-track their success anywhere in the world”.
An estimated 1 million New Zealanders live overseas and they represent at least a quarter of our skilled population. New Zealand has more to gain than any other developed country from connecting with its successful citizens overseas and turning their connections and knowledge into a strategic national asset.
Kea’s Every Kiwi Counts 2011 expat survey found:
  • While the incomes of Māori overseas are lower than those of NZ European expats, 35% of offshore Māori still earn over NZ$100,000 per annum.
  • Kea’s survey shows Māori are roughly equivalent to NZ Europeans in their ability to help New Zealand businesses while they are living overseas, with one in five (21%) saying they believe a company or people they are involved with would be interested in developing a deeper economic involvement in New Zealand or in a New Zealand business.
  • Māori in the Every Kiwi Counts 2011 survey are more likely than other expat respondents to live in Australia, compared to one-third of New Zealand Europeans expats.
  • The proportion of Māori in the Kea survey willing or able to state an iwi affiliation (77%) is very close to 2006 Census result (79%) for people living in New Zealand.
  • The reported iwi affiliations of overseas Māori are generally similar to those of Māori within New Zealand, with the main exceptions being Ngāi Tahu (18% in Every Kiwi Counts 2011 survey, versus 9% in the 2006 Census) and Tūhoe (3% and 6%, respectively).
  • The overseas Māori in our survey are slightly more likely than New Zealand Europeans to plan to return to settle in NZ. Their propensity to move back to NZ and then move overseas again is fairly high –about one quarter – and is the same as NZ Europeans.
Glenn Baker

Glenn is a professional writer/editor with 50-plus years’ experience across radio, television and magazine publishing.


Dishing up export possibilities

Exporter Today Editorial TeamExporter Today Editorial TeamApril 16, 2012

What’s mine is not yours

Exporter Today Editorial TeamExporter Today Editorial TeamApril 16, 2012

25 countries… and counting

Exporter Today Editorial TeamExporter Today Editorial TeamApril 16, 2012