Western Bay of Plenty

The Western Bay of Plenty, with a current population of 213,300, envelops Tauranga City and surrounding coastal, urban and rural areas, along with Matakana Island, at the entrance to Tauranga Harbour.

Home to New Zealand’s largest port – the Port of Tauranga – the Western Bay of Plenty is strategically located at the base of the ‘Golden Triangle’ with Auckland and Hamilton, ensuring the efficient movement of freight into, out of and around the wider Bay of Plenty region.

The region has an abundant skilled workforce from a variety of different sectors, and has earned the title of New Zealand’s fastest growing economy. Tauranga itself is experiencing a resurgence, with more than $1b being invested into new office and living space as the city intensifies.

The Western Bay of Plenty is internationally renowned for its expertise in horticulture, particularly green and gold kiwifruit and avocados, however, numerous other horticulture opportunities have developed in recent years, including Manukā honey, blueberries and more. The Bay of Plenty produces 80 per cent of New Zealand’s kiwifruit, resulting in an indirect impact of around $1.8b on the local economy.

While these expanding traditional sectors continue to form the foundation of the local economy, the region is also home to an exciting and innovative cluster of new sectors and opportunities including marine research, agri-tech and specialised manufacturing.

The University of Waikato’s new Tauranga Campus, which opened in 2019, has supported the significant expansion of its localised research programmes, including the development of a dedicated marine research facility to support the ongoing development of the region’s emerging aquaculture sector.

Alongside the University of Waikato’s extensive research programmes, the sub-region is also the base for PlantTech Research Institute, supporting ongoing technology developments for the horticulture sector.

For further information about opportunities in the Western Bay of Plenty contact Priority One, the sub-region’s Economic Development Agency.

Key contacts:

Nigel Tutt
Chief Executive
(07) 571 1401