Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy and Food Safety Minister Nikki Kaye have paid tribute to his 14 years as a chief executive in the public service.
“I’ve enjoyed working with Wayne over the last two years,” said Guy. “He has overseen the merger of MAF with the New Zealand Food Safety Authority (NZFSA) and the Ministry of Fisheries to create the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) in 2012.
“The merger resulted in savings of over $20 million a year and created a new strategy of ‘grow and protect’. MPI now has the ambitious target of doubling exports from the primary sector from $30 billion to $60 billion by 2025,” he noted.
Nikki Kaye commented that merger of the departments, including the NZFSA, to form MPI has been an important step for improving the overall management of New Zealand’s food systems.
“With food making up half our exports, it has been important to have an integrated agency and someone at the help who understands the whole food supply chain,” she said, adding that McNee has also helped to build relationships with emerging markets who are interested in our food systems.”
LIC chair Murray King says his Board is delighted to have attracted someone of the calibre, background and experience of McNee. “Wayne is moving from the Ministry to what’s often called the engine room of the dairy industry,” he said.
McNee is a former chief executive of the Ministry of Fisheries and of the Pharmaceutical Management Agency (PHARMAC).
Current LIC chief executive Mark Dewdney is due to retire from LIC at the end of this month and acting chief executive David Hemara will remain in that role until McNee joins the co-operative on 29 July 2013.