web analytics

Cluster f*&k on cluster bombs

Written By: - Date published: 9:34 am, August 19th, 2016 - 64 comments
Categories: capitalism, International, kiwisaver, national, Politics, same old national, war - Tags: , , ,

Cluster bomb

Julie Anne Genter from the Greens has raised an important issue.  It appears that many Kiwisaver funds have investments in the manufacturers of cluster bombs.

Put to one side the morality of this sort of investment there are also legal issues which cannot be ignored.

Under section 10 of the Cluster Munitions Prohibition Act 2009 a person commits an offence who “provides or invests funds with the intention that the funds be used, or knowing that they are to be used, in the development or production of cluster munitions”.  The potential penalty is a jail term not exceeding 7 years or a fine not exceeding $500,000, or both.

There was this fascinating exchange between Genter and Paul Goldsmith in Parliament yesterday about the issue.

Genter managed to Goldsmith to concede that there may be a risk that the Act applies.  There should be panic in the Beehive right now in assessing the implications of this.

So we have this strange situation where there is a law banning investment in the manufacture of these weapons yet there is tacit support by the Government of entities which are investing in the manufacture of cluster bombs.  And now that the news is out there are potentially many ordinary kiwis who now know that further contributions to their Kiwisaver accounts are being used for this purpose and this may arguably mean they are breaking the law by depositing further funds.

And what about the Crown?  It is bound by the Act.  Every time the Crown contributes to someone’s Kiwisaver account who then invests in cluster bomb manufacturers it may be complicit in the breach of the Act.

John Key is relaxed about the situation.

From Radio New Zealand yesterday:

The government is dismissing concerns about some KiwiSaver funds being invested in companies making bombs and mines, with Prime Minister John Key saying it is up to individuals to find out where their money is going.

RNZ revealed today that at least five of the nine default KiwiSaver providers invest in anti-personnel mine and cluster bomb manufacturers, despite it being illegal for government agencies to invest in them themselves.

Hundreds of thousands of KiwiSaver members might be unknowingly investing in those companies, and the Green Party and Amnesty International have called on the government to review default providers that might have investments in these weapons.

But the Prime Minister said it was not a big enough issue to review default providers.

Mr Key said the onus was on each individual investor to find out where their money was going.

“Some KiwiSaver managers will have a different view on those issues, they’ll set the demarcation line in the different place, it just depends on who they are.”

Key may be relaxed on the issue but I suggest that you contact your Kiwisaver provider and ask if they manage any funds that do not invest in cluster bombs and transfer all your savings into those funds. Or find an ethical Kiwisaver provider.  It looks like Kiwibank’s Kiwiwealth scheme may qualify.

64 comments on “Cluster f*&k on cluster bombs ”

  1. Note that even Radio NZ doesn’t even provide people with the context that it’s a crime to invest in cluster munitions. That is a highly necessary part of the story, media! Otherwise the National Party defense actually looks semi-reasonable.

    I’m not exactly steeped in the relevant law, but even I knew that from following the news on negotiations when they were happening in NZ. I would expect that there at least one person in the National Party that’s aware of this fact, and if any of them actually made either Goldsmith or Key aware of that fact, then they are in some legal hot water, as they would have a duty to correct any illegal investments as soon as they are made aware.

    Frankly it’s astounding and untenable that they are running the line that these are moral issues as opposed to legal ones.

    • mickysavage 1.1

      Yep up until yesterday I don’t think it would be a legal problem but now many will know that any further payment they make may end up manufacturing a cluster bomb.

      And this applies also to Crown payments into individual accounts.

      • I think the primary issue is indeed that the government now is obliged to cease payments to those kiwisaver accounts that are known to have invested in cluster munitions. (And technically, any payment made now that Paul Goldsmith is aware of that fact, would make him liable to imprisonment for a significant length of time, and therefore would vacate his seat) I’ll go ahead and assume that the fact that investing in cluster munitions is illegal excuses the government from its obligations to top up those kiwisaver accounts, as a well-constructed law should have made that clear,

        It’s a pretty long road to try and prove that individuals who sign up to or switch to the relevant kiwisaver providers are themselves commiting a crime, (as you have to establish their awareness of the illegal investments) but investigations should immediately be launched into each of the kiwisaver providers by the relevant authorities if the government takes the law seriously, to see if those individuals responsible for investment decisions were made aware that they were investing in cluster munitions, and if not, whether they have withdrawn those investments or at least initiated their own investigations following the revelation that they are investing in cluster munitions.

    • AmaKiwi 1.2

      Justice, National style.

      Piss us off and we’ll turn the authorities on you (Nicky Hager, etc.) and use tax paid prosecutors to financially ruin you. But we always protect our friends in banking, farming, construction, etc., from prosecution.

      The difference between National and a corrupt dictatorship is . . . ?

      • Leftie 1.2.1

        None… there is no difference. National and a corrupt dictatorship are one and the same.

      • I absolutely think you’re right that much of this is about trying to deflect attention from the illegality issue and shield their friends in finance.

        I don’t really expect that they would see this as corruption or perversion of justice, even though it plainly is, as they see such actions as routine in the running of a country, and think the left engages in them as well, regardless of evidence.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.3

      Frankly it’s astounding and untenable that they are running the line that these are moral issues as opposed to legal ones.

      Our laws should support ethical actions and make unethical ones illegal. This seems to be what this law does in making owning shares that manufacture cluster munitions illegal.

      Personally, I think we need a law that prohibits any NZer from owning shares in any business that produces weapons of war and policing, i.e, there’s an exception for weapons used for sporting. People should not be able to make a profit from death.

      • Well, they’re right that not every thing that the public find unethical should be illegal to be invested in, or illegal for government to invest in. But it is fair to single out things like nuclear weapons, tobacco, cluster munitions, etc… as having had a clear moral decision already made by the majority of the public, and that at least the government should not invest in them.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.3.1.1

          Why should that which the public consider unethical be allowed to be produced?

          • Matthew Whitehead 1.3.1.1.1

            There’s a line between things that are morally repugnant, like tobacco, and things that are merely a matter of opinion, like say, prostitution, pornography, or gambling. I’m saying that there is a legitimate distinction to be drawn, the government’s just not drawing it in the right place. So their rhetoric is fair, it just doesn’t apply here.

  2. Nessalt 2

    So the greens have done what Labour haven’t managed in almost 9 years. Landed a hit on a government minister in parliament through a well constructed set of questions.

    Well done Julie. Greens really are the major opposition party.

    • Sanctuary 2.1

      Actually they are the junior partner in an accord, but thanks for coming.

      • Nessalt 2.1.1

        Haha “Junior”

        That implies they have some thing to learn from “Senior”

        IF the greens want to learn how to destroy their electoral chances and alienate their wider support base then they should be Junior.

        Labour can’t govern without the greens. at all. the greens have never been in government but have been very effective in opposition. So for them, there is only upside and they can do whatever they like. Labour on the other hand now have to pander to the greens and to their own wider support base. Two things that aren’t perfectly compatible. Given Labours tendency to talk ineffectively out of both sides of it’s mouth on any issue, i’d say that this won’t end well for them come campaign time.

        Move along Sonny.

    • maninthemiddle 2.2

      A ‘hit’? You’re kidding, surely? Did you watch the clip MS posted? Genter is a whiner, and got increasingly frustrated as Goldsmith schooled her on who actually makes these decisions. These funds are ours, not the governments, and certainly not Julie Anne Genter’s. We should be able to choose to invest them in any legal activity we like. If the activity is not legal, then, as Goldsmith explained, there are consequences. As there should be.

      But oh how the melons would LOVE to get their hands on this money!!!

      • George Hendry 2.2.1

        ‘Did you watch the clip MS posted? Genter is a whiner, and got increasingly frustrated as Goldsmith schooled her on who actually makes these decisions’.

        Thank you for your personal attack on Ms Genter, and your description of her alleged emotional state.

        Along with the absence of analysis of any facts, you concede having no point.

        • maninthemiddle 2.2.1.1

          It’s not a personal attack, it’s an informed opinion. The recent revelations of Green MP’s KiwiSaver investments destroy her credibility utterly. I rest my case.

      • Gabby 2.2.2

        She got pissed off at his stonewalling, muginamuddle.

      • mickysavage 2.2.3

        MITM

        Did you read the bit how it is illegal to invest in cluster bomb manufacturers?

        • maninthemiddle 2.2.3.1

          So you claim. I don’t know whether it is or not, but those are decisions for investors and their fund managers, not meddling MP’s.

      • DoublePlusGood 2.2.4

        You clearly weren’t paying attention. She set him up well through the series of questions, and then backed him into a corner where he had to say there was a legal issue.
        Goldsmith was the one who was floundering.

        • George Hendry 2.2.4.1

          Yes, DPG, it looked like that to me as well.

          Is that why her ‘increasing frustration’ included some quiet smiles?

          Experienced opposition questioners know by now that they have to keep at it, without a single slip-up, until the scripted answers run out, at which point the ums and ahs kick in, as they did. The paper shuffling at that point was quite telling.

          To Mr Goldsmith’s credit he didn’t attempt to ‘get some guts’ by throwing a dead cat on the table, which the Speaker will excuse especially when the Rank Insiders do it and which might distract the questioner with the stink.

        • Leftie 2.2.4.2

          +1 DoublePlusGood, Yes she did, and Goldman was floundering alright. I also liked the way Grant Robinson backed up Julie Anne Genter, and rammed home the point that it breaks the law and carries a jail term and substantial monetary fine.

        • maninthemiddle 2.2.4.3

          Rubbish. She gave herself away when she couldn’t grasp the concept of investor choice.

          • Leftie 2.2.4.3.1

            So breaking the law has no meaning whatsoever then?
            It is obvious that you and reality don’t know each other Maninthemiddle.

            • maninthemiddle 2.2.4.3.1.1

              If any law has been broken, then I’m sure the authorities will get involved.

      • Leftie 2.2.5

        You don’t see and hear too good from the planet you live on Maninthemiddle.

  3. shorts 3

    this is an interesting issue – one that really divides the kinds of people we are… on one hand we have the “I’ve got mine fuck youse” mob who see nothing wrong with making money as long as its legal (or you’re not caught I’d imagine – eh tax cheats) so cluster bomb, tobacco, booze, munitions, oil, houses or whatever investment is all good as long as its returning a profit… and on the other there are those that want investments and our nation to be honest, upstanding and moral members of the global community – do less harm than good at the very minimum

    We can’t be surprised when those that stand for wealth show they don’t care and can see nothing wrong with the fine lines they happily traverse in the pursuit of more wealth….

    For some its a question of humanity…. for others its simply PR

  4. corokia 4

    National will be waiting for polling/focus groups/public opinion before deciding what to do here. Oooh look, Olympics, medals……maybe this one will sink and no one will notice, if not, wait for the U-turn next week.

  5. The Chairman 5

    Amnesty International wants the Government to review the default funds with a view of putting in the same standards used by the New Zealand Superannuation Fund.

    Why weren’t such standards put in place when the scheme was initially setup?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1

      I’m not sure what higher standard there is than a section in the Crimes Act. “You must obey the provisions in the Crimes Act” seems a fairly redundant instruction to anyone but National Party Ministers of the Crown.

      In any case, people who make the bad choice to be blown up by cluster bombs really need to stop pretending that the government can solve anything. Look, a gold medal!

      • The Chairman 5.1.1

        Nevertheless, if such standards were put in place when the scheme was initially setup, then default providers would have had to meet that criteria (ensuring there was robust on-going oversight) preventing millions of dollars being invested in unethical and potentially illegal investment.

        • Well, to some extent this is due to the overly friendly way the cluster munitions act is worded, in that it requires knowledge or intention for investing in cluster munitions to be a crime, thus technically an investor doesn’t need to take any pro-active steps to ensure they’re not investing in cluster munitions. (rather, it should be a defense that an individual could not reasonably know, so that you can still prosecute people who play dumb)

          Nothing’s technically wrong with the way that Kiwisaver itself is set up, other than perhaps that it’s made deliberately hard to understand where your funds are invested by many providers. The other, more recent laws should be the ones that oblige investors to avoid cluster munitions.

          (That said, it would definitely be good practice for the government to kick out default providers who don’t meet the NZ Super requirements, I agree. But in a sensible world it shouldn’t need to be in the law)

          • The Chairman 5.1.1.1.1

            Nevertheless, if such standards were put in place when the scheme was initially setup, providers would have had to take pro-active steps to maintain their default provider status. Thus, avoiding the current dilemma.

            In turn, investors wouldn’t have had to take any pro-active steps to be assured they’re not.

            Evidently, the initial setup of the scheme was lacking this investor protection. Moreover, it (millions of dollars unwittingly being invested in unethical and potentially illegal investment) clearly highlights why it should have initially been in the regulations/law.

          • the pigman 5.1.1.1.2

            “this is due to the overly friendly way the cluster munitions act is worded, in that it requires knowledge or intention for investing in cluster munitions to be a crime”

            You’re right, let’s just ditch the mental component of criminal offending altogether. It’s fair enough to subject people to criminal penalties for acts of others that they have no knowledge of, or intention in relation to, right?

            “overly friendly” T^T

            • Matthew Whitehead 5.1.1.1.2.1

              Actually mental components of criminal law ARE notoriously difficult to prove, wheras in law the “reasonable person” test is quite standard and easy. I can understand applying a mental test to the personal investor, (which is likely who the law is intended to capture) but it makes no sense to apply it to someone whose job is in the financial sector. Those people should know how to avoid illegal investments and it ought to be part of their job to do so proactively. If the goal is to prevent investment in cluster munitions, those in the financial services industry should be held to a higher standard and not permitted the defense that they didn’t know.

              I am happy for mental components of crimes to exist for crimes where widespread prosecution for an act isn’t the intent of the act being a crime, but it’s poor law to add a mental component when the threat of prosecution is intended as a deterrent from undesirable behaviour.

              Such a test wouldn’t prosecute people who unwittingly invested in cluster munitions while researching their investments with some care. It WOULD make someone guilty if they run an investment firm and didn’t even check whether they were investing in cluster munitions, or were not aware they needed to check for illegal investments, either of which I think is reasonable. Hell, it would probably let a personal investor off the hook, as most reasonable people don’t research their investments for arms companies.

  6. AmaKiwi 6

    “I’m comfortable with that” now applies to the Crown (you and me) breaking its own law and being liable for a fine of $500,000!

    • Leftie 6.1

      John key is always “comfortable” about breaking laws, make him pay for it out of his own pocket.

      • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1

        And the rest of the government. $500, 000 from each of them could go quite aways to getting our children out of poverty,

    • Macro 6.2

      Key continues to display his complete lack of moral development and social responsibility. That he is comfortable in investing in nuclear weapons, cluster bombs and the like, demonstrates yet again that he is not fit to be the Prime Minister of a country which has legislation forbidding the use and deployment of such weapons.
      That so many of the country’s sheeple support such a lackadaisical man in such a responsible position speaks volumes as to the moral values that are now concomitant in our society. Shame on us.

  7. Leftie 7

    Great work from Julie Ann Genter, but this has been raised before and yet nothing changes.

    KiwiSaver, cluster bombs, mines and nukes

    ROB STOCK
    Last updated 05:00, August 23 2015

    Westpac bank is reviewing its KiwiSaver scheme’s investments, after being alerted to stakes it holds in certain companies on the New Zealand Super Fund’s “exclusion” list.

    The NZ Super Fund’s exclusion list includes nine companies which it has tagged as being involved in the manufacture and supply of “cluster munitions” and, or “anti-personnel mines”.

    But the latest annual disclosure statements from KiwiSaver schemes, show three of those excluded companies appeared in popular KiwiSaver growth funds.

    In addition, ANZ and BNZ KiwiSaver growth funds each hold one of the excluded companies, but these banks defended those investments.

    The firms are US companies General Dynamics, excluded under the “cluster munitions” category, and Northrop Grumman, excluded under the “anti-personnel mines” category, as well as Singapore Technologies Engineering, excluded under both.

    The NZ Super Fund pays MSCI ESG Research to examine stockmarket-listed companies, and excluded stocks based on its reports.

    The KiwiSaver disclosure statements, dated the end of March, show ANZ’s KiwiSaver growth fund had a holding in Northrop Grumman, Westpac’s KiwiSaver growth fund had Northrop Grumman and Singapore Technologies Engineering, and BNZ’s growth fund had General Dynamics.

    Each make up only a small proportion of the funds’ total investments.

    Westpac, which invests through external fund managers, said it was “making enquiries with our third party investment managers to understand if it is possible to introduce restrictions regarding certain assets.”

    That would bring it into line with the Kiwi Wealth KiwiSaver scheme of state-owned Kiwibank, which uses “negative screening” to weed out armament makers, and holds none of the NZ Super Fund’s excluded companies.

    But both ANZ and BNZ said their external managers had assured them their KiwiSaver funds contained no companies involved with cluster bombs or mines.

    BNZ said Russell Investments had assured it that General Dynamics was not involved in the manufacture of cluster munitions, and ANZ said: “Our managers have advised us that there are no red flags for cluster munitions or landmines” for Northrop Grumman.

    Michael Salvatico from MSCI ESG Research, which has around 150 ESG analysts around the world, said Northrop Grumman was involved in the development of the Spider anti-personnel munitions system ( http://www.ausa.org/publications/armymagazine/archive/2014/Documents/12December14/SoldierArmed_December2014.pdf ), which was remotely controlled by an operator.

    It is being developed specifically to replace anti-personnel mines, which stay in the ground harming civilians long after conflict has ended.

    A NZ Super Fund spokesman said: “We understand that there are different views around their man-in-the-loop system, but it is our view that the company’s involvement in the manufacture of land mines is material enough to warrant exclusion under our responsible investment framework.”

    Salvatico said: “I can confirm that our research indicates General Dynamics currently manufactures munitions dispensing systems for the Sensor Fuzed Weapon (SFW), an air-dropped cluster munition weapons system. This classifies them as a component manufacturer with Strong Evidence. The assessment of Strong Evidence indicates involvement in the last three years with no ambiguity.”

    General Dynamics’ website says it “is not, to the best of our knowledge” involved in activities which breach the Convention on Cluster Munitions and the Convention on the Prohibition of Use, Stockpiling, Production, And Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines”.

    Again, it seems there is debate over what is a cluster munition.

    The Norwegian sovereign wealth fund also excludes General Dynamics under the category of “production of cluster munitions”.

    As with the other companies, NZ Super Fund excludes under these two categories, but accepts the controversial weapons make up a small part of their business.

    A growing number of investors want their superannuation savings to reflect their beliefs, said Salvatico. “Super is your voice,” he said. “You can use it now.”

    Academic Matheson Russell has called for the Government to at least require KiwiSaver default funds to be socially responsible investors, and says KiwiSaver funds could be banned from investing in companies on the NZ Super Fund’s exclusion list, though this would need to be debated.

    It has however been very profitable to invest in defence stocks.

    The annualised return investors have had from the MSCI World Aerospace and Defense Index in US dollars has been 10.28 per cent, compared to an annualised return of 6.2 per cent on the MSCI World Index.

    <a href="http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/71324537/kiwisaver-cluster-bombs-mines-and-nukes

    But it’s not as if companies cannot be weeded out….

    ” MSCI’s research is used by some fund managers to weed out companies that are polluters, exploiters of human misery, or are involved in certain controversial industries.”

    “The New Zealand Super Fund, which looks after nearly $30 billion of pension money for the Government, uses MSCI to identify and avoid companies involved with certain weapons (cluster munitions, anti-personnel mines, and nuclear bombs), as well as tobacco companies, gross polluters, and those which have breached human rights.”

    KiwiSaver and ethical investing

    ROB STOCK
    Last updated 05:00, August 26 2015

    <a href="http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/71417033/kiwisaver-and-ethical-investing

    NZ Super Fund has deadly portfolio

    TIM HUNTER AND STEVE KILGALLON
    Last updated 05:00 03/08/2014

    <a href="http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/10341818/NZ-Super-Fund-has-deadly-portfolio

    And despite the National government freezing govt contributions in 2009….

    NZ Super Fund annual return nearly 18 pc
    Last updated 16:15 21/03/2013

    <a href="http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/8456252/NZ-Super-Fund-annual-return-nearly-18-pc

    • McFlock 7.1

      Well, I’ve emailed my fund to check. Might have to move to another plan if they don’t have an ethical investment policy.

    • DoublePlusGood 7.2

      So, Westpac’s, ANZ’s and BNZ’s entire boards and all senior management involved with their KiwiSaver funds to prison for 7 years and a $500,000 fine each then? I mean, it’s an open and shut case – they all publicly admitted the situation, and then continued to break the law when they knew they had broken the law.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.2.1

        Seems reasonable.

      • Leftie 7.2.2

        Yes, they, (& Superfund), have all knowingly broken the law. As pointed out in the post, it’s not as if there are no resources to weed out these companies before hand, because there are, and they are making money out of breaking the law.

      • Brutus Iscariot 7.2.3

        Except for the widely-used part of the Sentencing Act that allows sentences to be quashed if they are “manifestly unjust or out of proportion to the gravity of the offending”

        What no-one is actually acknowledging here, is that in none of the identified cases have there been decision makers at these funds in question, making a deliberate investment in cluster munitions. The share holdings are indirect and miniscule as a result of investment into passive index funds, where you just own a slice of all the investable companies listed on that particular stock market.

        Any prosecution would have enough holes to drive a truck through, especially when the precise nature of the involvement and definitions of “cluster munition manufacture” comes into play.

        I know it might give you a hard-on to think about rich pricks going to jail, but try to have some perspective.

        • DoublePlusGood 7.2.3.1

          I’m mostly posting in jest because I know full-well that no one will ever be held accountable for this, but to be quite honest, investment in cluster munitions manufacture is a serious matter resulting in significant loss of life from use of those munitions. This is why the fines and prison sentences allowed are large.
          While you are right that a prosecution is unlikely to succeed despite the publicly admitted breaking of the law, quite frankly, the punishments allowed *are* appropriate given the downstream loss of life.

          • Brutus Iscariot 7.2.3.1.1

            How far down the chain do you want to go though? By your logic any NZ citizen who has their funds in a non-complying Kiwisaver could also now be liable for prosecution – they are “investing” in cluster munitions, just through yet another layer and delegated. Just as the KS providers currently delegate to index providers and are being threatened with sanction.

  8. Henry Filth 8

    Well, given the number of Kiwisaver accounts with exposure to (say) the S&P500, the fines should pretty well clear the government’s deficit in pretty short order.

    As for the Prime Minister, well, as usual, he’s probably right, yes it is up to the individual. But, as usual, wrong in any meaningful relationship to reality for most New Zealanders. He really does have an awful track record on that.

    “Three in a row. Time to go”

  9. Macro 9

    The New Zealand Council for Socially Responsible Investment (now closed) actively campaigned for a number of years lobbying Govt on this issue.

    “CSRI has had a number of successes including encouraging the government to pull out of its investment in tobacco and landmines. It also demonstrated the inadequacy of the legislated criteria for suitable investment by NZ Government funds. It exposed the irony that its funds were actually investing in nuclear weapons, despite the fact that, for over three decades, the New Zealand Government had campaigned against the French and USA governments about their involvement with nuclear weaponry. The Accident Compensation Corporation in NZ has subsequently ceased such nuclear weapon investment although the New Zealand Superannuation Fund still persists in this practice.”

    Robert Howell worked for many years on this issue advising Governments both here and overseas. He is now resident in Australia where he continues to work on ethical investment issues.

  10. Gangnam Style 10

    Interesting contrast, ‘gangs are scum & make their money of illegal activities’ vs ‘bankers are scum & make their money off illegal activities’. Regarding the ‘P House clean up scam” there were commentators saying simple things like ‘well they shouldn’t break the law’, where are you on this BM? PR? Or it;s OK to break the law if you rich & powerful? Just the dumb poor have to keep absolutely squeaky clean? ‘If you want to do white time you got to do a white crime’ ?

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Government to review housing settings
    New Zealand’s stronger-than-expected economic performance has flowed through to housing demand, so the Government will review housing settings to improve access to the market, the Finance Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “Our focus is on improving access to the housing market for first home buyers and ensuring house price growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Crown accounts reflect Govt’s careful economic management
    The better-than-expected Crown accounts released today show the Government’s careful management of the COVID-19 health crisis was the right approach to support the economy. As expected, the Crown accounts for the year to June 2020 show the operating balance before gains and losses, or OBEGAL, was in deficit. However that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Government to consider recommendations on DNA use in criminal investigations
    The Minister of Justice has received the Law Commission’s recommending changes to the law governing the way DNA is used in criminal investigations. The report, called The Use of DNA in Criminal Investigations – Te Whahamahi I te Ira Tangata I ngā Mātai Taihara, recommends new legislation to address how ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Speech to Wakatū Nelson regional hui on trade
    First, I want to express my thanks to Te Taumata for this hui and for all the fantastic work you are doing for Māori in the trade space. In the short time that you’ve been operating you’ve already contributed an enormous amount to the conversation, and developed impressive networks.  I ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Speech to Primary Industries Summit
    Thank you for the opportunity to speak to you today about the significant contribution the food and fibres sector makes to New Zealand and how this Government is supporting that effort. I’d like to start by acknowledging our co-Chairs, Terry Copeland and Mavis Mullins, my colleague, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Fast track referrals will speed up recovery and boost jobs and home building
    The Government is taking action to increase jobs, speed up the economic recovery and build houses by putting three more projects through its fast track approval process. “It’s great to see that the fast-track consenting process is working. Today we have referred a mix of potential projects that, if approved, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Papakāinga provides critically needed homes in Hastings
    A papakāinga opened today by the Minister for Māori Development the Hon Willie Jackson will provide whānau with much needed affordable rental homes in Hastings. The four home papakāinga in Waiōhiki is the first project to be completed under the ‘Hastings Place Based’ initiative. This initiative is a Government, Hastings ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand ready to host APEC virtually
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern took over the leadership of APEC earlier today, when she joined leaders from the 21 APEC economies virtually for the forum’s final 2020 meeting. “We look forward to hosting a fully virtual APEC 2021 next year. While this isn’t an in-person meeting, it will be one ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Revival of Māori Horticulturists
    The rapid revival of Māori horticulture was unmistakeable at this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy Awards, with 2020 marking the first time this iconic Māori farming event was dedicated to horticulture enterprises. Congratulating finalists at the Awards, Māori Development Minister Willie Jackson said growing large-scale māra kai is part of Māori DNA. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Emergency benefit to help temporary visa holders
    From 1 December, people on temporary work, student or visitor visas who can’t return home and or support themselves may get an Emergency Benefit from the Ministry of Social Development, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced today. Previously, temporary visa holders in hardship because of COVID-19 have had ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • School sustainability projects to help boost regional economies
    Forty one schools from the Far North to Southland will receive funding for projects that will reduce schools’ emissions and save them money, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This is the second round of the Sustainability Contestable Fund, and work will begin immediately. The first round announced in April ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Farmer-led projects to improve water health in Canterbury and Otago
    More than $6 million will be spent on helping farmers improve the health of rivers, wetlands, and habitat biodiversity in Canterbury and Otago, as well as improving long-term land management practices, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. Four farmer-led catchment group Jobs for Nature projects have between allocated between $176,000 and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Tupu Aotearoa continues expansion to Pacific communities in Nelson, Marlborough, Tasman & Northl...
    Pacific communities in Nelson, Marlborough, Tasman and Northland will benefit from the expansion of the Tupu Aotearoa programme announced today by the Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio. The programme provides sustainable employment and education pathways and will be delivered in partnership with three providers in Northland and two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New primary school and classrooms for 1,200 students in South Island
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins unveiled major school building projects across the South Island during a visit to Waimea College in Nelson today. It’s part of the Government’s latest investment of $164 million to build new classrooms and upgrade schools around the country. “Investments like this gives the construction industry certainty ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister of Māori Development pays tribute to Rudy Taylor
      Today the Minister of Māori Development, alongside other Government Ministers and MP’s said their final farewells to Nga Puhi Leader Rudy Taylor.  “Rudy dedicated his life to the betterment of Māori, and his strong approach was always from the ground up, grassroots, sincere and unfaltering”  “Over the past few ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister to attend APEC Leaders’ Summit
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will attend the annual APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting and associated events virtually today and tomorrow. “In a world where we cannot travel due to COVID-19, continuing close collaboration with our regional partners is key to accelerating New Zealand’s economic recovery,” Jacinda Ardern said. “There is wide ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Speech to Infrastructure NZ Symposium
    Tena Koutou, Tena Koutou and thank you for inviting me to speak to you today. This is a critical time for New Zealand as we respond to the damage wreaked by the global COVID-19 pandemic. It is vital that investment in our economic recovery is well thought through, and makes ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Pike River 10 Year Anniversary Commemorative Service
    Tēnei te mihi ki a tātau katoa e huihui nei i tēnei rā Ki a koutou ngā whānau o te hunga kua riro i kōnei – he mihi aroha ki a koutou Ki te hapori whānui – tēnā koutou Ki ngā tāngata whenua – tēnā koutou Ki ngā mate, e ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Huge investment in new and upgraded classrooms to boost construction jobs
    Around 7,500 students are set to benefit from the Government’s latest investment of $164 million to build new classrooms and upgrade schools around the country. “The election delivered a clear mandate to accelerate our economic recovery and build back better. That’s why we are prioritising construction projects in schools so more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Keeping Pike River Mine promises 10 years on
    Ten years after the Pike River Mine tragedy in which 29 men lost their lives while at work, a commemorative service at Parliament has honoured them and their legacy of ensuring all New Zealand workplaces are safe. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern attended the event, along with representatives of the Pike ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Additional testing to strengthen border and increase safety of workers
    New testing measures are being put in place to increase the safety of border workers and further strengthen New Zealand’s barriers against COVID-19, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “These strengthened rules – to apply to all international airports and ports – build on the mandatory testing orders we’ve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More public housing delivered in Auckland
    The Government’s investment in public housing is delivering more warm, dry homes with today’s official opening of 82 new apartments in New Lynn by the Housing Minister Megan Woods. The Thom Street development replaces 16 houses built in the 1940s, with brand new fit-for-purpose public housing that is in high ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Agreement advanced to purchase up to 5 million COVID-19 vaccines
    The Government has confirmed an in-principle agreement to purchase up to 5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 5 million people – from Janssen Pharmaceutica, subject to the vaccine successfully completing clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. “This agreement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will leave a conservation legacy for Waikanae awa
    Ninety-two jobs will be created to help environmental restoration in the Waikanae River catchment through $8.5 million of Jobs for Nature funding, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan announced today. “The new funding will give a four-year boost to the restoration of the Waikanae awa, and is specifically focussed on restoration through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Dunedin Hospital project progresses to next stage
    As the new Dunedin Hospital project progresses, the Government is changing the oversight group to provide more technical input, ensure continued local representation, and to make sure lessons learnt from Dunedin benefit other health infrastructure projects around the country. Concept design approval and the release of a tender for early ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Jump in apprentice and trainee numbers
    The number of New Zealanders taking up apprenticeships has increased nearly 50 percent, and the number of female apprentices has more than doubled. This comes as a Government campaign to raise the profile of vocational education and training (VET) begins. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • ReBuilding Nations Symposium 2020 (Infrastructure NZ Conference opening session)
    Tena koutou katoa and thank you for the opportunity to be with you today. Can I acknowledge Ngarimu Blair, Ngati Whatua, and Mayor Phil Goff for the welcome. Before I start with my substantive comments, I do want to acknowledge the hard work it has taken by everyone to ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand's biosecurity champions honoured
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor has paid tribute to the winners of the 2020 New Zealand Biosecurity Awards. “These are the people and organisations who go above and beyond to protect Aotearoa from pests and disease to ensure our unique way of life is sustained for future generations,” Damien O’Connor says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tourism Industry Aotearoa Conference
    speech to Tourism Industry Aotearoa annual summit Te Papa,  Wellington Introduction Nau mai, haere mai Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, Ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou. Thank you Tourism Industry Aotearoa for hosting today’s Summit. In particular, my acknowledgements to TIA Chair Gráinne Troute and Chief Executive Chris Roberts. You ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets announced as Government’s second market study
    The Government has today launched a market study to ensure New Zealanders are paying a fair price for groceries.   “Supermarkets are an integral part of our communities and economy, so it’s important to ensure that Kiwis are getting a fair deal at the checkout,” Minister of Commerce and Consumer ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Masks to be worn on Auckland public transport and all domestic flights
    Masks will need to be worn on all public transport in Auckland and in and out of Auckland and on domestic flights throughout the country from this Thursday, Minister for COVID-19 Response Chris Hipkins said today. “I will be issuing an Order under the COVID-19 Response Act requiring the wearing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand signs Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership
    Increase to New Zealand’s GDP by around $2 billion each year Increase opportunities for NZ exporters to access regional markets Cuts red tape and offers one set of trade rules across the Asia Pacific region New government procurement, competition policy and electronic commerce offers NZ exporters increased business opportunities Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister acknowledges students as exams begin
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins has recognised the extraordinary challenges students have faced this year, ahead of NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams which begin on Monday. “I want to congratulate students for their hard work during a year of unprecedented disruption, and I wish students all the best as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister meets with key ASEAN and East Asia Summit partners
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today attended the ASEAN-New Zealand Commemorative Summit and discussed with Leaders a range of shared challenges facing the Indo-Pacific region, including: The ongoing management of the COVID-19 pandemic; The importance of working collectively to accelerate economic recovery; and Exploring further opportunities for partners to work more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Veterans Affairs Summit held in Korea
    A Ministerial Summit on Veterans’ Affairs was held in the Republic of Korea this week. Ministers with veteran responsibilities were invited from all 22 countries that had been part of the United Nations Forces during the Korean War (1950 – 1953). The Summit marked the 70th anniversary of the outbreak ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clear direction set for the education system, skills prioritised
    The Government has released a set of priorities for early learning through to tertiary education and lifelong learning to build a stronger, fairer education system that delivers for all New Zealanders. “The election delivered a clear mandate from New Zealanders to accelerate our plan to reduce inequalities and make more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • A Progressive Agenda
    Speech to the Climate Change + Business Conference, November 12, 2020 Tena koutou katoa Thank you for inviting me to speak here today. It is great to see us all come together for a common cause: to redefine our future in the face of unprecedented times.  Covid-19 and climate change are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Wellington Pasifika Business Awards
    Thank you for having me join with you as we celebrate the success of Pacific businesses tonight, and recognise the resilient and innovative entrepreneurs who lead them. Equally important to me is, that we are also able tonight to offer up our gratitude to those leaders who have organised and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Commemorative address at Act of Remembrance for Armistice Day
    Tuatahi māku  Ka mihi tu ki a koe Pita E pīkauria ana i te mana o Ngā tūpuna o te whenua nei. Thank you Bernadette for your warm introduction. I would also like to reflect on your acknowledgments and welcome Peter Jackson, Taranaki Whānui; Members of the National War Memorial ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New fund launched to reduce carbon emissions from coal and gas
    The Labour Government is quickly delivering a key election policy that will help business to switch from fossil fuels like coal and gas to clean energy for process heat while accelerating the economic recovery from Covid. The $70 million fund will allow business and industries to access financial support to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago