Find the most up to date information on the changes we’re making to the administration of Crown pastoral land in the South Island high country.

The Crown is responsible for around 1.2 million hectares of pastoral land stretching from Marlborough to Southland. Much of this land is leased on a long-term basis to farmers for pastoral grazing.

Law changes to end tenure review and provide for better administration of Crown pastoral land in the South Island high country are now being considered by Parliament. The Crown Pastoral Land Reform Bill passed its first reading on 23 July 2020.

Crown Pastoral Land Reform Bill

The Bill proposes changes to the Crown Pastoral Land Act 1998 and Land Act 1948. It will end tenure review and introduce an outcomes-based approach to the regulatory system to help ensure that sustainable pastoral farming maintains or enhances the inherent (ecological, landscape, cultural, heritage and scientific) values of the land. The changes also aim to increase transparency, improve accountability, enable more public involvement in how the system operates, and better support the Crown-Māori relationship.

The Bill reflects input from over 3000 submitters to the discussion document Enduring Stewardship of Crown Pastoral Land, which was released for public consultation in early 2019, and subsequent meetings and discussions undertaken with iwi, leaseholders, and stakeholders.

Enduring Stewardship of Crown Pastoral Land

The Bill indicates what the Crown will be seeking to achieve as a long-term steward of its pastoral land. It addresses some of the issues identified in the early 2019 assessment of the Crown Pastoral Land Regulatory System, which can be found on our Regulatory systems page. Work on operational changes are ongoing, with a focus on improving our monitoring of activities on pastoral lease land.

Regulatory stewardship and strategy

There is information about the legislative process on Parliament’s website, including opportunities for you to have input to the draft Bill.

Parliament - How a Bill becomes law

Until the Bill becomes law, the current Crown pastoral land regime will continue to apply.

The Summary of submissions from consultation is available here:

Submissions on enduring stewardship of Crown pastoral land

Last Updated: 29 July 2019