After a major refurbishment, HERA House was officially re-opened on 20 March by the Minster of Science and Innovation Hon Steven Joyce.
He is also Minister for Economic Development, Minister for Regulatory Reform, Minister of Science and Innovation, Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment, Minister Responsible for Novopay and Associate Minister of Finance; not quite Minister for everything but nearly.
Following speeches that looked at HERA, past, present and future and with supportive comments from the Minister the bronze plaque was unveiled to take its place alongside others including the original bronze plaque from the opening of HERA House thirty years ago by the then Minister for Science and Technology Hon RJ Tizard.
Another plaque commemorates the establishment of Metals New Zealand, the industry’s peak body in 2011 which was launched by the Hon David Carter, then Minister for Economic Development.
In 1985, HERA was very much about science and technology. It wasn’t long after its establishment and there was strong recognition that as a small and isolated country, industry needed support. But things have changed and HERA has changed as well.
Science and technology are still the cornerstones of what the organisation is about, and are perhaps even more important today where our industry is open to global competition, than ever before.
There has been a global phenomenon in relation to science and technology and that has been a strong connection between science and technology and economic performance, so it was wholly appropriate that New Zealand follow suit and that David Carter launch Metals New Zealand.
Today, HERA continues to meet the science and technology needs of industry, but like our members and the market they operate in, we know that such activities must be part of a linked development strategy, so it is most appropriate that the Hon Steven Joyce in his two roles as Minister of Science and Innovation and Minister for Economic Development, unveiled the plaque at the reopening of HERA House.
We are hopeful that the close association between science and technology and development heralds an approach by Government that mirrors that taken by HERA and Industry.