The Ministry for Pacific Peoples (MPP), formerly the Ministry of Pacific Island Affairs, is the public service department of New Zealand charged with advising the government on policies and issues affecting Pasifika communities in New Zealand. MPP seeks to promote the status of Pasifika peoples in New Zealand by keeping them informed of the issues, then acting as an advocate in dealing with other state sector organisations.
The Ministry for Pacific Peoples’ stated objective is to promote the development of Pacific Islanders living in New Zealand so that they can contribute fully to New Zealand’s social and economic life. The Ministry advocates for the Pacific community within the public sector by working with other government agencies and departments to meet Pasifika people’s needs, and monitoring policies that affect Pacific people. It also encourages Pasifika leadership in public sector organisations whose decisions affect Pacific communities.
The current Minister for Pacific Peoples is Aupito William Sio. The current Chief Executive of the Ministry for Pacific Peoples is Laulu Mr Mac Leauanae.
The Ministry of Pacific Island Affairs was first established in 1990 to look after New Zealand’s growing Pasifika population. Prior to that, Pacific communities living in New Zealand fell under the responsibility of several government departments including the Te Puni Kōkiri (Ministry of Māori Development) and the Department of Internal Affairs‘s Pacific Affairs Unit. In 1975, Pacific communities established the Pacific Island Advisory Council to address their socio-economic needs. The council established education resource and multicultural centres while the Pasifika communities lobbied for a stand-alone ministry.
On 22 December 2015, the Ministry announced it would be changing its name to the Ministry for Pacific Peoples, to reflect the growing number of Pasifika children born in New Zealand. A new visual identity, designed by two design students of Pacific descent and based around three manu (birds), was also introduced to represent a message of travel, freedom and success.
On 31 August 2017, the Ministry relocated its Auckland office from East Tamaki to a new office in Manukau, which is home to most of the country’s Pacific population. This office is part of a joint hub shared with Te Puni Kōkiri, which deals with Māori affairs.