Provincial Growth Fund

Through the Provincial Growth Fund, central government has committed to investing $1 billion per annum over three years in regional economic development.

The Provincial Growth Fund aims to lift productivity potential in the provinces. Its priorities are to enhance economic development opportunities, create sustainable jobs, enable Māori to reach their full potential, boost social inclusion and participation, build resilient communities, and help meet New Zealand’s climate change targets.

All provinces are eligible for funding, however, Tairāwhiti/East Coast, Hawke’s Bay, Tai Tokerau/Northland, Bay of Plenty, West Coast and Manawatū-Whanganui have been identified for early investment.


The Fund’s criteria

Projects will be assessed against criteria organised around four themes:

  • Link to Fund and government outcomes – The project should lift the productivity potential of a region or regions, and contribute to other objectives. These include jobs, community benefits, improved use of Māori assets, sustainability of natural assets, and mitigating and adapting to climate change.
  • Additionality – The project needs to add value by building on what is there already and not duplicating existing efforts. The project also needs to generate clear public benefit.
  • Connected to regional stakeholders and frameworks – Projects must align with regional priorities. They will need to have been discussed and agreed with relevant local stakeholders.
  • Governance, risk management and project execution – Projects will need to be supported by good project processes and those involved should have the capacity and capability to deliver the project. Projects need to be sustainable in the longer term beyond the Fund’s life.

Projects will be assessed to ensure that any investment fits with their scale and risk profile. The overall package of investments will be tracked to ensure strategic fit. Individual projects need to support and build on one another.

Who can apply?

Individuals, non-government organisations, iwi, companies, charities and can all apply to the Fund.

All New Zealand companies, including those that are foreign-owned, may be eligible if they are looking to make investments in New Zealand.

The three main metropolitan areas – Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch – are not eligible.

The priority regions for early investment are Tai Tokerau/Northland; Toi Moana/Bay of Plenty, Tairawhiti/East Coast, Manawatu-Whanganui and Tai Poutini/West Coast, but applications are welcome from other regions.

How to apply?

It’s best to first check out the background information on the Fund, including the criteria, how to apply, who is eligible and Expression of Interest and Application forms which are available at www.mbie.govt.nz/regions.

If you have any questions email PGF@mbie.govt.nz and a regional advisor will in touch within three weeks if not sooner.

Alternatively you could submit an Expression of Interest or an Application.

Expression of Interest (EOI)

If you are not sure whether your project is eligible for the PGF, you can submit an Expression of Interest [PDF 684KB]. This will help us to understand your proposal and eligibility.

One of our regional advisors will contact you within three weeks to discuss your EOI and any additional information that may be needed. They can provide you with advice and support where necessary.

Submitting an application

If you are confident your project is eligible, then you can submit an application form [PDF 713KB].
The information you provide will help us to assess and evaluate eligible projects and investment opportunities.

One of our regional advisors will contact you within three weeks to discuss your application and any additional information that may be needed. They can provide you with advice and
support where necessary.

Completed Expressions of Interest and applications can be emailed to PGF@mbie.govt.nz.

How are decisions made on funding?

Once the application is submitted, it will be entered into our system for consideration and go through our approval process, which includes a regular cycle of decision-making meetings.

What can be funded and what is the maximum limit?

The Fund has three investment tiers:

  1. Regional projects and capability: Support of economic development projects, feasibility studies and capability building identified by the regions.
  2. Sector investment (including One Billion Trees programme): Investment in initiatives targeted at priority and/or high value economic opportunities.
  3. Enabling infrastructure projects: Investment in regional infrastructure projects that will lift productivity and grow jobs.

There are no set limits for funding. Applications will be assessed against these criteria. 

Oversight

The Fund will be overseen by a core group of Regional Economic Development Ministers. The Minister’s group will monitor the Fund’s performance and discuss regional opportunities.

To support the Fund’s implementation two new groups will be established – a Provincial Development Unit in the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and an Independent Advisory Panel.

  • The Unit will be responsible for leading the Fund’s design, its administration and monitoring its operation in consultation with other government agencies.
  • The Panel will provide independent advice on sector projects and the balance of the portfolio of investments.

The type of project and scale of investment will determine how funding is approved and who makes those decisions.

 

Further information

 

Senior Regional Officials

Senior public servants from various agencies lead government work in each area.

Region

Senior Regional Official


Northland

Ben Dalton, Ministry for Primary Industries

Bay of Plenty

Paul Stocks, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

Waikato

TBC

Gisborne

Ruth Bound, Ministry of Social Development

Hawke's Bay

Carl Crafar, Ministry of Justice

Taranaki

Al Morrison, State Services Commission

Manawatū-Whanganui

Di Grennell, Te Puni Kōkiri

Te Tau Ihu (Top of South)

TBC

Canterbury

Helen Wyn, Department of Internal Affairs

West Coast

Bruce Parkes, Department of Conservation

Southland

TBC 


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