The Tai Poutini West Coast Economic Update for the year to March 2018 is now available to download.

Since 2012 the West Coast has been in the grip of an economic downturn. However, the latest data provides a clear indication the economy is now on the road to recovery. It is very encouraging to see the positive trends emerging within the region’s economic indicators.

Download a copy of the Economic Update to gain detailed insights on the region’s economy.

2019 04 04 Econ Update cover






2019 03 13 Life Education Trust

DWC has joined Rosco Contractors, Grey Ford and Bathurst Resources as major sponsors of the Life Education Trust West Coast.

“We are extremely grateful to have DWC come on board as one of our major sponsors of the Life Education programme, something which every child on the West Coast benefits from,” says Life Education Fundraising Manager Suzi Taylor.

The Life Education Trust educates and empowers children to embrace positive choices for a healthy mind and body.

On the West Coast the mobile classroom travels from Haast to Karamea, over 5,000km every year – one of the largest geographical areas in New Zealand. Harold and Carmen (Life Ed Educator) visit every primary school and many preschools across the Coast, reaching over 3,300 kids.

“These children get to experience the joy and wonder of being inside the mobile classroom, which is equipped with sight and sound equipment designed to capture their imaginations and, along with Carmen and Harold, gives a unique learning experience,” says Mrs Taylor.

Renee Rooney, DWC Chair - 10 July 2019

It goes without saying that the primary industries on the West Coast are all incredibly important for our Region’s wellbeing, both economically and socially, whether it be farming, extraction, forestry, or fishing.

At the time of writing, West Coast dairy farmers were in the process of voting and preparing themselves for the outcome of one of the biggest decisions they will ever make – whether Westland Milk Products will be sold or remain as an independent farmer-owned co-operative.

Westland Co-operative Dairy Company has been part of our Region’s fabric for over 80 years, giving our farmers a real sense of pride and belonging in having ownership of something very special.

Being faced with deciding which direction to take the co-operative into the future has been confronting for many. Decisions made by individual farmer shareholders will not have been made lightly. We now await with much anticipation of any change in ownership that may occur.

But what won’t change is the beautiful untamed natural wilderness we live, work, play, and invest in – something that is envied by many from afar.

At DWC, we’re focussed and working at Growing Business to Grow the Coast. DWC helps people, businesses, and organisations to grow, either in capability or in scale.

It goes without saying that the Trust Fund is a valuable asset to our Region, and it is crucial that we are utilising, distributing, and leveraging it prudently now and into the future.

An independent review of the Trust Deed and operations of DWC is currently underway. It is essential for our Region that the Trust Deed is fit for purpose going forward. Self-reviewing for any organisation should be standard practice and seen as a positive process. The review may recommend minor tweaks or major tweaks, or both, and we will be sure to communicate any outcome with our Coast community.

It is annual report time at DWC. Looking back at the last 12 months, it’s fantastic to note how many people have engaged with DWC and its services. It is rewarding seeing this work captured and we look forward to releasing this in August.

We are in the process of recruiting for our new CEO, who will take up the reins later in the year. In the meantime, it’s business as usual with Chris Mackenzie still at the helm, and we’re all committed to having a smooth, seamless transition to avoid disruption, especially as we go through the local body election period.

The DWC team remains committed to keep the momentum going in the strategic direction we have been working hard on. Trustees are a future-focussed group with the best interests of the Region at the forefront of any decisions and strategic planning for the organisation. That said, we do acknowledge that actions speak louder than words.

2019 04 03 Monthly Update 2DWC’s Co.Starters business start-up and development programme is set to begin in Greymouth on 30 April.

The weekly course is designed to help you find the best approach to starting and growing a business and collaborate with others who share your entrepreneurial spirit as you work through your business model.

Miriam Rees from Blue Spur Milk & Honey attended the previous programme in Greymouth.

“Every week at Co.Starters there is a guest speaker: local entrepreneurs, accountants and lawyers. It’s fantastic to see the local community getting behind the course, spreading their knowledge and sharing their inspiring stories,” Miriam says.

Hannah Green from Wild Peace Wellness Centre attended the Co.Starters programme in Westport saying: “the incredible support from the facilitators and all the other students is honestly priceless.”

If you would like to start your own business, develop your existing business, or explore and develop an idea or project then the Co.Starters programme is for you.

To register for the nine-week Co.Starters programme delivered by WestREAP contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

2019 03 13 Free Business Development Clinics

Last month saw the start of regular business development clinics being held across the region. DWC’s business development managers (BDMs) held 12 clinics during February in Westport, Reefton, Barrytown, Blackball, Greymouth and Hokitika. 

On top of weekly clinics in Westport, Greymouth and Hokitika, this month has already seen the BDM’s on the road visiting Franz Josef and Haast, with clinics still to come in Hari Hari, Reefton and Moana.

The clinics are open to businesses from all sectors, all sizes and at all stages of development. They are aimed at helping you gain knowledge, connect with the right people and grow your business.

“We have had an excellent uptake of the free clinics and encourage everyone to take the opportunity to come and discuss your business with Fiona, David or myself,” says DWC business development manager Dave Lynch.

2019 03 13 BDC Schedule