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About the Ministry = Mō te Manatū

About the Ministry =Mō te Manatū

The Ministry for Culture and Heritage leads a government work programme that encompasses the arts, heritage, broadcasting, and sport and recreation. We provide advice to the Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage, the Minister of Broadcasting, and the Minister for Sport and Recreation.

The Ministry works with national cultural and sport agencies such as NZ On Air, Creative New Zealand, the New Zealand Film Commission, Sport and Recreation New Zealand (SPARC), and Te Papa. We manage their funding and accountability arrangements, and support the high performance of their boards.

The Ministry provides a cultural perspective for the work of other government departments. We lead the Cultural Diplomacy International Programme that promotes New Zealand overseas through cultural activities, in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, and Tourism New Zealand. We are working with other agencies to ensure that New Zealand’s unique arts and heritage feature strongly in the Rugby World Cup NZ2011 Festival programme.

The Ministry negotiates protocols with iwi under the ‘Cultural Redress’ section of historical Treaty of Waitangi settlements. We administer key cultural legislation, including the Protected Objects Act 1975 (to protect artefacts and taonga) and the Flags, Emblems, and Names Protection Act 1981 (to protect objects and symbols of national identity).

The Ministry also supports and promotes New Zealand culture through its own services, grants, and products. We maintain war graves and national memorials, including the National War Memorial in central Wellington. We administer grants for historical research, Waitangi Day celebrations, and the construction projects of regional museums and galleries. We produce historical works, and are developing New Zealand’s official online encyclopedia, Te Ara. We maintain several historical websites, one of which ( includes a teaching resource; and we provide cultural content for the ‘what’s on’ website Eventfinder.

Updated on 23rd July 2015