A consultation meeting in Kaikoura next week on deep-sea oil exploration permits has been cancelled.
It is not clear why the meeting has been cancelled.
A public meeting will be held on November 5, although full details have not been finalised.
The change of meeting follows stories in the Kaikoura Star and the Marlborough Express this week on the closed consultation meeting.
Officials from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment had been due to attend the meeting, scheduled for 3pm on Tuesday, to be hosted by the Kaikoura District Council. Councillors were invited to attend the discussion on the 2014 block offer permits for oil exploration off the Kaikoura coast.
Members of coastal guardian group Te Korowai o Te Tai o Marokura had also been invited, but the general public had been told they were not welcome, leading to confusion over whether it was a public meeting.
Kaikoura people had asked to be able to go to the meeting, along with the media, but were told by council staff the meeting was not open to them.
The staff member said the ministry had asked for a closed meeting, although the ministry said that decision had been up to the council as the meeting host.
Submissions on the consultation are due on November 14.
- The Marlborough Express