On the face of it last night's meeting looked like a pretty good outcome for both the Prime Minister and the Maori Party.
For John Key, he was able to look strong in the eyes of his supporters by not apologising for his comments around the Tribunal, while his offering to Maori of an undertaking not to legislate over water rights and interests was also pretty savvy.
The Government has always had a position of recognising that Maori do have rights and interests in water - as opposed to ownership.
So in my view it was not actually a huge step at all for the government to take to give that undertaking not to legislate.
The Government's big concern has always been around potential Maori court action stopping or delaying the asset sales.
And its always been pretty confident that Maori issues around
rights and interests of water can be resolved (and shown to be
resolved) separately through other mechanisms like Treaty claims
and individual dealings with hapu and iwi.
For the Maori party it was a good meeting too.
The commitment not to legislate away rights and interests is a tangible victory it can present to its supporters and wider Maori.
And it will ease the concerns of many.
The Governments assurance that it will also work with the Maori Party on the findings of the Tribunal is also an important victory for the party as it shows its detractors like the Maori Council that, far from being useless, there is clear benefit for Maori of being at the government table.
I do have one nagging doubt though about all this and that is around the word "ownership".
Last night's joint statement stressed that the debate was not about ownership.
Thats an important line for the Government as it strongly believes no one owns water.
The fact that the Maori party also seems comfortable that the debate is not about ownership is also significant and must be something of a relief for the Government.
However, I can't imagine all Maori will be comfortable that the debate is not about ownership, meaning some kind of challenge over who owns the water in court remains a live issue.
Last night's meeting does take a lot of the heat out of the issue for now. However I suspect there is still plenty more to come in the water rights debate.