The Human Rights Commission's latest race relations review says businesses are being urged to respect the rights of indigenous people.
The 2013 report says business interest in mining and water affect the rights of tangata whenua, including the right to have their relationship to the environment protected, and pursue their own development.
It says some hapu and iwi are challenging commercial plans for mining, gas exploration and commercial use of water in their rohe.
That includes Ngati Hau led protests opposing exploration for gold and silver in the Puhipuhi Hills.
The commission says last year the United Nations consulted on draft international guidelines to support respect of indigenous people's rights by the private sector.