Māori engagement plan

We have developed a 'living' Māori engagement plan for the Plant Variety Rights Act 1987 review.

In 2018 we released a Māori engagement plan to set out how we intended to engage with Māori during the Issues stage of the Plant Variety Rights Act 1987 review (September-December 2018). The plan was based on (then draft) guidelines developed by the Office for Māori Crown Relations – Te Arawhiti, and pre-consultation engagement earlier in the review.

Māori Engagement Plan [PDF, 568 KB]

The engagement plan setting out how we intended to engage with Māori during the Options stage of the review (July-September 2019) is outlined below. This stage is now complete and Cabinet made policy decisions in November 2019. 

However, there remained a few outstanding issues relating to Treaty compliance that we asked for feedback on from 10 August to 5 October 2020. The same principles of engagement that applied at the Options stage applied to this stage as well. 

The Plant Variety Rights Bill (the Bill) was introduced to Parliament on 11 May 2021 and completed its first reading on 19 May 2021. It was considered by the Economic Development, Science and Innovation select committee. After considering submissions on the Bill, the Bill was reported back to Parliament on 19 November 2021.

A discussion document setting out our proposals for regulations to support the new PVR regime opened for consultation on 14 July 2021 and closed on 1 September 2021. During this time we also held an online hui to discuss the proposed list of non-indigenous species of significance under the new regime.

Consultation on an exposure draft of the new PVR regulations opened on 13 April 2022 and closed on 20 May 2022. Over the same period, IPONZ consulted on PVR fees to support the new regime.

Feedback received in both consultations will help inform final regulations and fees settings in the new PVR regime.

Stage of review What does this involve Timing

Issues stage


Pre-consultation phase: information gathering, planning, engagement with interested groups to support development of Issues paper and Māori Engagement plan.


2017/first half of 2018


Release of Issues paper for public consultation (following Cabinet agreement) including regional hui and public meetings.

September to December 2018


Options stage

Development of options in response to feedback received during the Issues stage.

January to June 2019


Release of Options paper for public consultation.

July to September 2019


Drafting legislation

MBIE provides advice to Ministers following analysis of submissions. Cabinet makes policy decisions. Bill is drafted.

September 2019 to April 2021


Outstanding policy issues

Release of discussion document on outstanding issues for public consultation and analysis of feedback from consultation. Cabinet makes decisions and these are incorporated in the draft Bill.

August 2020 to April 2021


Legislative stage

PVR Bill is introduced to Parliament.

May 2021



Select Committee process, including public submissions on the Bill.

May to November 2021


Select Committee reports back. Bill goes through final stages. 

November 2021


Release of exposure draft of regulations for public consultation.

April to May 2022


Implementation stage

Implementation and transition to new regime. 

New regime in place by mid-2022

What has happened so far? A recap of our Māori engagement at the Issues stage

The Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs launched the first stage of consultation on the PVR Act review at the Ngā Taonga Tuku Iho conference in Nelson in September 2018.

Read the press release(external link)

During the Issues stage, we held eight regional hui (Kaikohe, Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Gisborne, Hastings, Hāwera and Christchurch) to discuss Treaty of Waitangi issues in the PVR regime. We also received nine written submissions that directly addressed these issues.

Read the key themes from the regional hui with Māori [PDF, 194 KB]

Read the submissions on the Issues paper(external link)

At the hui, we discussed how we should engage with Māori in subsequent stages of the review. The general view was that we should convene a hui with people with experience and expertise in mātauranga and tikanga Māori, and intellectual property issues, to develop options for the Options stage.

In preparation for our engagement on the Options stage, we held a two-day “options development” hui in Wellington in April to discuss how we might make the PVR regime Treaty compliant. We invited participants from the regional hui we held during the Issues stage as well as plant breeders who work with indigenous plants, and the head of the PVR Office.

Engagement during the Options stage

In thinking about our engagement with Māori at the Options stage, we set out below:

Revised objectives

In forming our objectives, we considered:

  • the Engagement Framework and Guidelines(external link) developed by the Office of Māori Crown Relations – Te Arawhiti;

  • the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples;

  • Waitangi Tribunal guidance; and

  • Key themes from pre-consultation discussions.

For further detail on these resources, please see the link above and Annex 1 and 2 of our Māori Engagement Plan: Issues stage [PDF, 568 KB].

The nature of the Options stage consultation is different from the previous stage. This stage directly precedes policy decisions by the Government on changes to be made to the PVR Act. Accordingly, the objectives of our engagement should also be different.

Our objectives were to:

  • Support robust discussions with Māori about the Government’s options and proposals for changing the PVR Act – in particular, the options and proposals for Treaty of Waitangi compliance – and the rationale behind them.

  • Provide Māori with meaningful opportunities to inform the Government of their views on its options and proposals for changing the PVR Act, and to become informed of the interests of others in the PVR Act review.

  • Ensure the Government and Māori have the capacity to work together to improve the Government’s options and proposals, if necessary, before the Government makes policy decisions on the PVR Act that affect Māori – in particular, options and proposals for Treaty of Waitangi compliance.

Our engagement approach

Our engagement approach for the Options stage comprised the following:

Read the submissions on the Options paper(external link)

Read the notes from the hui [PDF, 1.7 MB]

Engagement during the Outstanding Issues consultation

The same objectives and principles that guided our engagement at the Options stage applied to our engagement on the outstanding policy issues. This engagement included holding a virtual hui on 29 September 2020 to discuss those outstanding issues that directly related to the provisions implementing our Treaty of Waitangi obligations. Due to COVID-19 restrictions we were unfortunately unable to meet kanohi ki te kanohi.

We received 20 submissions on the discussion paper. Submitters who wished to remain anonymous are referred to as ‘anonymous submitter’. Redactions have been made in accordance with the Official Information Act 1982 and the Privacy Act 1993 and when content may be commercially sensitive.

Read the submissions on the Outstanding Issues paper(external link)

Read the summary of submissions from the consultation [PDF, 360 KB]

Engagement during the Proposed Regulations consultation

The same objectives and principles that have guided our engagement on previous policy proposals applied to our engagement on the proposed regulations.

This engagement included holding a virtual hui on 25 August 2021 to discuss the list of non-indigenous species of significance. We received 17 written submissions on the discussion paper, which included submissions from Māori.

Read the submissions on the proposed regulations(external link)

Read the summary of submissions, PVR Technical Focus Group meeting notes and hui notes [PDF, 155 KB]

Next steps

The Bill was reported back to Parliament on 19 November 2021, following consideration at select committee. The Bill is now proceeding through the remaining Parliamentary stages.

You can find out more information about the Bill, track its progress through Parliament, and read the select committee report and advice provided by officials on the Parliament website.

Plant Variety Rights Bill(external link) – New Zealand Parliament website

Following consultation on the exposure draft of the PVR regulations, we will provide advice to Ministers if any changes are needed.

Following consultation on the proposals for PVR fees, IPONZ will provide advice to Ministers and seek policy decisions later in 2022.

It is anticipated that the new regulations will come into effect, along with the majority of the provisions of the Bill, in mid-2022.

Last updated: 26 May 2022