20 Jul 2012

Meeting with Maori Party paves way for asset sales - PM

9:16 pm on 20 July 2012

The Prime Minister says Wednesday night's meeting with the Maori Party paved the way for the sale of shares in Mighty River Power to go ahead.

John Key says the Maori Party agrees with the Government that iwi rights to water should be dealt with through negotiation, rather than through the Waitangi Tribunal or the courts.

The meeting came after the Maori Party was upset by Mr Key suggesting the Government could ignore the Waitangi Tribunal's report into water rights.

But Mr Key says any misunderstanding has been cleared up and he thinks it makes it more likely the sales will proceed.

He says what came from the meeting is that the Maori Party agrees with the Government's approach of negotiating water rights with iwi.

And he says it also accepts Maori don't own water.