ECT adds to PGF boost by $18.5m

Three entities supported with major funding injection.

Three entities supported with major funding injection.

New Government funding for Tairawhiti will be backed up with $18.5 million of support from Eastland Community Trust.

The Government yesterday announced three entities - Aotearoa Social Enterprise Trust (ASET), Matai Lab and the Prime Wood Cluster Centre of Excellence (Prime) - would receive $27.1 million dollars of PGF backing. In addition, ECT would also provide all three with funding.

ASET would receive $250,000, while Matai would receive $1m from ECT.

Last year the PGF released $500,000 of $20m earmarked for Prime. Yesterday saw the release of another $5m, alongside ECT’s overall $17m investment.

ECT General manager Commercial Richard Searle said the trust’s financial commitment to key projects as a regional entity gave outside parties like the PGF the confidence to also invest.

“The Eastland Community Trust has identified the opportunity to use its funding to provide support or assurance for community projects, to go out and attract other participants to make these Tairawhiti initiatives happen.”

ECT has previously been recognised for its collaborative approach with Government and local stakeholders.

The PGF Panel earlier this year committed $5.5m to a new airport terminal for Tairawhiti, alongside regional commitment in the form of a $5m distribution from ECT, and a $2m investment by airport leasee Eastland Group.

“We have worked closely with the PGF Panel since their initial visit to te Tairawhiti last year,” ECT trustee Ailsa Cuthbert said.

“As a region we have really come together across iwi, Gisborne District Council, the trust and relevant stakeholders to deliver on a best for region approach, an approach that is working and will benefit all of te Tairawhiti.”

The three projects to receive funding yesterday cover different sectors but share a common thread in community wellbeing and job creation.

Matai is a ground-breaking, world-first medical imaging research facility, to be built on Gisborne Hospital grounds by May 2020.

“Matai will create local jobs in advanced science and medical fields, as well as new and exciting career paths for our rangatahi. It will also put te Tairawhiti at the forefront of medical resonance imaging nationally and globally.”

Matai chair John Pittar said ECT’s support would result in a significant contribution to regional growth and healthcare.

“ECT’s funding enables Matai to create high-tech job positions, which in turn will help to attract back and retain ‘home-grown’ talent, who will be a source of inspiration and growth for our next generation.”

Matai director of research Dr Samantha Holdsworth said ECT and its economic development arm Activate Tairawhiti, had been there from the beginning.

“They have been right behind us, as out-of-the-box thinkers. They have been there from the start, helping to get us to where we are today.”

ASET, which work to rehabilitate people back into the workforce, would be located at ECT’s Commerce Place business park. The land will be made available by ECT, while the PGF’s $2.2m figure would cover the cost of a shed and food manufacturing and processing plant on the Commerce Place site.

New Government funding for Tairawhiti will be backed up with $18.5 million of support from Eastland Community Trust.

The Government yesterday announced three entities - Aotearoa Social Enterprise Trust (ASET), Matai Lab and the Prime Wood Cluster Centre of Excellence (Prime) - would receive $27.1 million dollars of PGF backing. In addition, ECT would also provide all three with funding.

ASET would receive $250,000, while Matai would receive $1m from ECT.

Last year the PGF released $500,000 of $20m earmarked for Prime. Yesterday saw the release of another $5m, alongside ECT’s overall $17m investment.

ECT General manager Commercial Richard Searle said the trust’s financial commitment to key projects as a regional entity gave outside parties like the PGF the confidence to also invest.

“The Eastland Community Trust has identified the opportunity to use its funding to provide support or assurance for community projects, to go out and attract other participants to make these Tairawhiti initiatives happen.”

ECT has previously been recognised for its collaborative approach with Government and local stakeholders.

The PGF Panel earlier this year committed $5.5m to a new airport terminal for Tairawhiti, alongside regional commitment in the form of a $5m distribution from ECT, and a $2m investment by airport leasee Eastland Group.

“We have worked closely with the PGF Panel since their initial visit to te Tairawhiti last year,” ECT trustee Ailsa Cuthbert said.

“As a region we have really come together across iwi, Gisborne District Council, the trust and relevant stakeholders to deliver on a best for region approach, an approach that is working and will benefit all of te Tairawhiti.”

The three projects to receive funding yesterday cover different sectors but share a common thread in community wellbeing and job creation.

Matai is a ground-breaking, world-first medical imaging research facility, to be built on Gisborne Hospital grounds by May 2020.

“Matai will create local jobs in advanced science and medical fields, as well as new and exciting career paths for our rangatahi. It will also put te Tairawhiti at the forefront of medical resonance imaging nationally and globally.”

Matai chair John Pittar said ECT’s support would result in a significant contribution to regional growth and healthcare.

“ECT’s funding enables Matai to create high-tech job positions, which in turn will help to attract back and retain ‘home-grown’ talent, who will be a source of inspiration and growth for our next generation.”

Matai director of research Dr Samantha Holdsworth said ECT and its economic development arm Activate Tairawhiti, had been there from the beginning.

“They have been right behind us, as out-of-the-box thinkers. They have been there from the start, helping to get us to where we are today.”

ASET, which work to rehabilitate people back into the workforce, would be located at ECT’s Commerce Place business park. The land will be made available by ECT, while the PGF’s $2.2m figure would cover the cost of a shed and food manufacturing and processing plant on the Commerce Place site.

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