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In matters involving financial benefits provided by the government to people of Māori ethnicity, for example scholarships or Waitangi Tribunal settlements, authorities generally require some documentation of ancestry or continuing cultural connection, such as acceptance by others as being of the people, but no minimum "blood" requirement exists as determined by the government.The most current reliable evidence strongly indicates that initial settlement of New Zealand occurred around 1280 CE at the end of the medieval warm period.Many New Zealanders regularly use Māori words and expressions, such as "kia ora", while speaking English.Māori are active in all spheres of New Zealand culture and society, with independent representation in areas such as media, politics and sport.In addition, more than 140,000 Māori live in Australia.The Māori language (known as Te Reo Māori) is still spoken to some extent by about a fifth of all Māori, representing 3% of the total population.are the indigenous Polynesian people of New Zealand.
The Maori Affairs Amendment Act 1974 changed the definition, allowing individuals to self-identify as to their cultural identity.
Horticulture flourished using plants they introduced, and later a prominent warrior culture emerged.
The arrival of Europeans to New Zealand starting from the 17th century brought enormous changes to the Māori way of life.
Socioeconomic initiatives have been implemented aimed at closing the gap between Māori and other New Zealanders.
Political redress for historical grievances is also ongoing.
The earliest period of Māori settlement is known as the "Archaic", "Moahunter" or "Colonisation" period.