The New Zealand Institute for Minerals to Materials Research was established in August 2017 as one of four Regional Research Institutes. It is based in Greymouth on the West Coast. At its inception, NZIMMR was provided $11 million of seed funding under contract to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).
Two state of the art laboratories have been constructed at Spring Creek, a minerals processing laboratory and a minerals to materials laboratory. These facilities allow the building of strong research capability at NZIMMR.
The NZIMMR’s location in Greymouth is strategic. Here, regional minerals interests include alluvial gold mines, coal mines, and heavy mineral sands exploration. We are part of the West Coast community and are developing partnerships with larger minerals players in New Zealand.
One of NZIMMR's aims is to work with smaller operators to unlock the potential of their mining operations, on the principle of “mine once and recover all”. We are also working to help make uneconomic minerals economic, to meet ongoing, growing demand worldwide for minerals and materials.
We are committed to supporting Vision Mātauranga. This will be demonstrated by building a strong collaborative relationship with Ngāi Tahu, a substantial landholder on the West Coast and receiver of benefits from any minerals produced. The West Coast-based hapū of Ngāi Tahu are Ngāti Waewae and Makaawhio.
We will maintain relationships with both local hapū. Our principal engagement will be through Ngāti Waewae. The following whakataukī represents the core philosophy which the NZIMMR shares with Ngāti Waewae: “Mō tātou, ā, mō kā uri ā muri ake nei” – for us and our children after us. NZIMMR is committed to working with Ngāti Waewae to incorporate Ngāti Waewae mātauranga (traditional knowledge) and strategies (tikanga) into its projects.