Covid-19: may be endemic

Written By: - Date published: 8:51 am, May 15th, 2020 - 53 comments
Categories: covid-19, health, International, Social issues - Tags: , , ,

Like measles, covid-19 could become endemic. Never dying out entirely. Needing to be controlled in human denser populations into the indefinite future.

This is the warning from the WHO.

Speaking at a briefing on Wednesday, WHO emergencies director Dr Mike Ryan warned against trying to predict when the virus would disappear.

“It is important to put this on the table: this virus may become just another endemic virus in our communities, and this virus may never go away,” Dr Ryan told the virtual press conference from Geneva.

“HIV has not gone away – but we have come to terms with the virus.”

Dr Ryan then said he doesn’t believe “anyone can predict when this disease will disappear”.

There are currently more than 100 potential vaccines in development – but Dr Ryan noted there are other illnesses, such as measles, that still haven’t been eliminated despite there being vaccines for them.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stressed it was still possible to control the virus, with effort.

“The trajectory is in our hands, and it’s everybody’s business, and we should all contribute to stop this pandemic,” he said.

WHO epidemiologist Maria van Kerkhove also told the briefing: “We need to get into the mindset that it is going to take some time to come out of this pandemic.”

While I’m not a doctor, over the years I have looked at the history of diseases in human populations in my reading and courses. That is where I think that this disease will wind up. If I had to bet, and assuming a vaccine, I’d say this will eventually be more prevalent than measles, and less frequent outbreaks than the annual flu. It will be endemic.

In epidemiology, an infection is said to be endemic (from Greek ἐν en “in, within” and δῆμος demos “people”) in a population when that infection is constantly maintained at a baseline level in a geographic area without external inputs.[1] For example, chickenpox is endemic (steady state) in the UK, but malaria is not. Every year, there are a few cases of malaria reported in the UK, but these do not lead to sustained transmission in the population due to the lack of a suitable vector (mosquitoes of the genus Anopheles).

Wikipedia – endemic

The difference from measles is that it seems likely that any conferred immunity getting covid-19 or from a vaccine will be temporary. Unlike measles which generally gives a life-long immunity, the corona viruses in human populations often appear to only give a few years immunity.

We simply haven’t observed this disease for long enough to be able to say that with any definition. But there is a lot of attention being paid to looking at reinfection rates, because this has obvious implications in public policy.

There is a particularly good article in the US NPR (National Public Radio) looking at different aspects of immunity with the corona virus family and with covid-19 in particular.

Antibodies, which are proteins found in the blood as part of the body’s immune response to infection, are a sign that people could be developing immunity. But antibodies are by no means a guarantee a person will be protected for life — or even for a year.

Shaman has been studying four coronaviruses that cause the common cold. “They’re very common and so people seem to get them quite often,” Shaman says. Ninety percent of people develop antibodies to those viruses, at least in passing, but “our evidence is those antibodies are not conferring protection.

That may be simply because colds are relatively mild, so the immune system doesn’t mount a full-blown response, suggests Stanley Perlman, a pediatrician who studies immunology and microbiology at the University of Iowa. “That’s why people get colds over and over again,” he says. “It doesn’t really tickle the immune response that much.”

He’s studied one of the most severe coronaviruses, the one that causes SARS, and he’s found that the degree of immunity depended on the severity of the disease. Sicker people remained immune for much longer, in some cases many years.

For most people exposed to the novel coronavirus, “I think in the short term you’re going to get some protection,” Perlman says. “It’s really the time of the protection that matters.”

Perlman notes that for some people the symptoms of COVID-19 are no worse than a cold, while for others they are severe. “That’s why it’s tricky,” he says, to predict the breadth of an immune response.

And it’s risky to assume that experiences with other coronaviruses are directly applicable to the new one.

Nadeau is working on several studies, including one that seeks to recruit 1,000 people who were previously exposed to the coronavirus. One goal is to identify people who produce especially strong, protective antibody responses. She says the antibody-producing cells from those people can potentially be turned into vaccines.

Another critical question she’s zeroing in on is whether people who become immune are still capable of spreading the virus.

“Because you might be immune, you might have protected yourself against the virus,” she says, “but it still might be in your body and you’re giving it to others.”

It would have huge public health implications if it turns out people can still spread the disease after they’ve recovered. Studies from China and South Korea seemed to suggest this was possible, though further studies have cast doubt on that as a significant feature of the disease.

Indeed…

More questions than answers so far. But as the people from the WHO have been pointing out, unlike SARS, it looks like covid-19 is unlikely to die out in the world population.

So New Zealand should probably start planning on it being present in those 4 million tourists who used to flood our shores every few years. Because after all the growth pattern for covid-19 looks like the grim reality of this graphic. It only takes a few people spreading and a reduced level of immunity in a population, and social distancing becomes the only viable public health measure.

From a question time by a virologist at the world economic forum in march

53 comments on “Covid-19: may be endemic ”

  1. Ad 1

    The interesting conclusion out of that for me is that permanent high waves of economic damage continue to surge around the earth, decreasing only in years not months – at least until there is a globally available vaccination.

    That would mean a much longer depression of global oil production, and carbon expenditure generally.

    If this is the only way to bring forward peak oil demand, it's a dim sliver of silver lining a carbon-black cloud.

    • RedLogix 1.1

      The interesting conclusion out of that for me is that permanent high waves of economic damage continue to surge around the earth, decreasing only in years not months – at least until there is a globally available vaccination.

      Right on the first point, but many of these damage events are not going to be irreversible. Whatever emerges in the next decade is not going to be readily recognisable; in much the same way the world of 1950, would have looked quite strange to someone in 1930.

      A vaccine is not going to turn back the clock on any of this.

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    Best to think of humans as ecosystems. " The human body is teeming with microbes—trillions of them. The commensal bacteria and fungi that live on and inside us outnumber our own cells 10-to-1, and the viruses that teem inside those cells and ours may add another order of magnitude." https://www.the-scientist.com/features/the-bodys-ecosystem-37085

    "Altogether, the members of the human body’s microbial ecosystem make up anywhere from two to six pounds of a 200-pound adult’s total body weight, according to estimates from the Human Microbiome Project, launched in 2007 by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The gastrointestinal tract is home to an overwhelming majority of these microbes, and, correspondingly, has attracted the most interest from the research community. But scientists are learning ever more about the microbiomes that inhabit parts of the body outside the gut, and they’re finding that these communities are likely just as important."

    "From a microbes “point of view” the human body is a vast array of surfaces some internal, others external that are continuously colonized by endemic and exotic microbes beginning from the time of our birth and continuing throughout life up until and even beyond the point of death. The surfaces on which these organisms grow and are constantly being sloughed off as new tissues form beneath existing ones resulting in the loss of established biofilms but providing new and uncolonized, or at least less colonized, cell surfaces on which new biofilm communities can be come established." https://www.cs.montana.edu/webworks/projects/stevesbook/contents/chapters/chapter004/section007/blue/page001.html

    "He received a PhD in microbiology from Michigan State University and postdoctoral training in Ecology at the University of Chicago." 15 min talk on The Human Body as an Ecosystem: Brendan Bohannan at TEDx: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dfy2qYfUWE0

    For those in a hurry, this one is quick & posted last month: https://www.gutmicrobiotaforhealth.com/a-video-for-understanding-why-were-like-an-ecosystem/

  3. ianmac 3

    Ouch!!!

  4. McFlock 4

    If we can manage it so that it truly is comparable to influenza (i.e. even a short term vaccine means vulnerable people can get a free jab every year), tourism can open up again imo.

    But I reckon we might want to consider in the meantime what tourism we allow – cruise ships? Package tours? Tourist density?

    • Sabine 4.1

      the question might rather be………whom we allow in. Where does the tourist come from. any place on this planet will be as safe as is the weakest link, atm i would say that would be England, Europe, US. – and a lot of our tourists come from there.

      • McFlock 4.1.1

        Not if we have regular immunisation and quick-process tests at the border.

        But assuming we can reopen, we do have an opportunity to avoid oversaturation. To put it bluntly, tourists might bring in cash but they're also a big problem, from congestion to pollution.

        • Sabine 4.1.1.1

          so far we have neither.

          • McFlock 4.1.1.1.1

            possibly a good idea to start mulling it over now, though.

            Otherwise it'll just be the last 40 years all over again, operators maximising their little patch and bugger the consequences for everyone else.

    • weka 4.2

      Mass, fast tourism is not compatible with a low carbon economy, why even go there in terms of trying to recreate it?

      • McFlock 4.2.1

        Indeed.

        But the place is awesome and people want to see it. So do we blanket limit numbers of visas? Maybe charge a premium for tourist visas? Or do we look at what tourism industry practises we allowed to evolve that maybe we should rethink – bus package tours? Maybe a hundred-mile limit for bus charters? What about cruise ships (fwiw, I have a real issue with that industry)? Airbnb vs domestic housing?

        The tourist industry as we know it is dead. But tourism will grow again, and it can either be left to evolve to accrue the greatest buck while throwing off negative externalities like before, or we can plan it more carefully this time,

        • weka 4.2.1.1

          My suggestion is that we separate tourism from the economy. Create sustainable jobs to provide livelihoods for locals (which may or may not be in tourism, but let genuine sustainability/regenerative economy be the guiding principle).

          Then look at the borders issue. I'm fine with them staying closed for now. That tourists like it here doesn't mean they should get to come. It's not that we should never have tourism, it's that we're not in a position yet to design a new system that takes into account covid (too many unknowns atm), or climate/ecology.

          A hundred-mile bus limit might be a useful tool, it's just not the start of the design process, it's more like nearer the end.

          The issue of how to earn export income to buy all our things likewise could be seen now through a sustainable lens. Instead of starting with the fear that if we don't have extractive industries we can't have health care or iphones or margarine, what if we looked at what we actually need once we're relocalised what we can due to covid and future proofing against other disasters and pandemics? Then look at how we earn the money or generate the wealth to support those things we truly need and want.

          • weka 4.2.1.1.1

            Also, I'd love to see research done on how locals feel about mass tourism if they had the choice of making a good living in other ways (this is distinct from the industrial tourism powerholders). Because what I'm hearing is that lots of people are relieved to have their backyards back to normal after the past few decades (even people that are new to areas can feel this), and I'm betting that there will be flow on mental health benefits from things not being so damn crazy all the time.

            "NZ" might want the tourism industry back, but do the people who live in the high tourism areas?

            • weka 4.2.1.1.1.1

              Might be good to look at the values benefit in tourism too not just the dollar value. We might find some conflict between going for big buck tourism and say cultural exchange.

          • McFlock 4.2.1.1.2

            What does "separate tourism from the economy" mean? By its very nature it's an economic beast.

  5. Sabine 5

    at the very minimum i would expect the next three to 5 years to be very interesting.

    I would also suggest that poeple might start getting used to the idea that life is that vulnerable that within three weeks from today one can be dead. It was intersting to check the dates/duration/death number of previous pandemics, Justinian Plague – 4 years, half of the world population dead ( known world population) same as with the plague in 1360 – 4 years, half of the world population dead…Maybe we should keep this in mind.

    • lprent 5.1

      Bearing in mind the rate that we have been getting novel viruses out of Africa, Asia, and the Middle East in the last 4 decades as those areas develop and push into animal reserves, I think that we can expect to get at least two or three pandemic threats each decade.

      • Sabine 5.1.1

        i think the reason we will 'get' these pandemics has more to do with the 'developped aka rich' worlds travel to places and then bringing with a whole heap of stuff we did not pack, such as mosquitos, and yes, viruses.

        It is interesting to read up on the strains, and the Covid Strain that did NY and NJ in is the one from Italy, where lots of people travelled in February for their Carnevale / summer holidays.

        A bit like in the dark ages when the pestilence was brougth to Europe by returning crusaders and the fleas in their clothes, travel packs etc.

  6. weka 6

    The bit I don't get yet is whether NZ can technically eliminate the virus completely or not.

    If we look at the SDHB figures, there haven't been any new cases in something like 4 weeks. There are a small number of existing cases (poor sods, this means they've been ill for longer than a month, and this is another emerging issue that's not well understood yet). If those existing cases were quarantined and the DHB borders closed, assuming for the sake of argument these are possible and desirable, then isn't it a matter of time until there is no coronavirus left in that area?

    Or, are we assuming that there is still de facto community transmission, it's slower than expected, and it's not yet visible?

    • Poission 6.1

      Or, are we assuming that there is still de facto community transmission, it's slower than expected, and it's not yet visible?

      No one really knows,whether it can remain in a dormant state in known reservoirs( in nz humans, and cats,few bats)

      The ability to be asymptomatic (whilst still shedding virus) then become symptomatic suggests an opportunistic predator.

      Today the marist cluster case is a good example.

      Today's confirmed case is linked to the Marist cluster in Auckland and was identified through recent follow-up testing of the school community.

      The Ministry said the person who tested positive first had symptoms nearly two months ago and had a previous negative test.

      https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/416713/one-new-case-of-covid-19-in-new-zealand-after-three-days-of-no-cases

      • weka 6.1.1

        "No one really knows,whether it can remain in a dormant state in known reservoirs( in nz humans, and cats,few bats)"

        Thanks, that's the missing link I think. Do we know how this works with other viruses?

        The Marist situation might have been a false negative or someone who didn't have covid 2 months ago but has since picked up it up elsewhere.

      • Incognito 6.1.2

        They said it was a “weak positive”, which suggests to me it was at the lower end of the test range, possibly close to the sensitivity limit. They also stated that this person was “not considered infectious now” but on what basis is not clear.

        • Poission 6.1.2.1

          Lots of unknowns,

          sensitivity.test methodology change.CV mutation etc.

          Too little knowledge means the risk have not changed,the signalling needs to remain vigilant.

          • Incognito 6.1.2.1.1

            Agreed.

            The test is in all probability still the same as used all along unless there’s batch variability in the kit or instrumentation, which is also highly unlikely but still possible. We would have heard about a change in testing methodology.

            I don’t have information at hand, but the PCR test is meant to be robust and insensitive to mutations. It seems unlikely that after previously testing positive, then negative, and now ‘weakly positive’ that this was caused by a mutation.

            The most likely ‘explanation’, IMHO, is a different sample taken by a different practioner and/or a false negative in the previous test.

            No cause for alarm but also no reason to become complacent and lackadaisical.

  7. Treetop 7

    Covid-19 is not just endemic but like a hole in a bucket when it comes the economy.

    I wonder if Robertson and Bridges had a money box as a kid and who saved the most.

    The 20 b extra borrowed needs to be saved for the stormy days. What those stormy days are going to be no one can predict when and how severe. I have always said that having money in a crisis allows a person to have more options.

    The government have done a good job in preventing a crisis and by crisis I mean a high death toll.

    • Stunned Mullet 7.1

      'The government have done a good job in preventing a crisis and by crisis I mean a high death toll. '

      I must admit to be less enthralled with their efforts, than with our very fortunate position in being a small, sparsely populated country a long way from COVID-19 hotspots.

      • Treetop 7.1.1

        It takes a hell of a lot more than a geographic location of a country to prevent a Covid-19 slaughter.

        The PM could have been like the President in Brazil or Trump or Johnson who were not prepared to go hard and fast.

        I am jittery about our border being opened up to non citizens and non residents due to the sneakiness of the virus.

        • Stunned Mullet 7.1.1.1

          Comparing us with North America in particular and Europe to a large degree is fairly facile.

          Both countries had COVID 19 circulating much earlier than we did to the extent that when they did take action there was a very large amount of community transmission occurring it is more apt to compare ourselves to our nearest neighbor.

          • Treetop 7.1.1.1.1

            What other countries do is up to them. I am not into the comparing game. I am into seeing the virus eradicated in the country I live in.

        • Janet 7.1.1.2

          “I am jittery about our border being opened up to non citizens and non residents due to the sneakiness of the virus.”

          Me too. Covid 19 needs to be fully understood before we open our borders wide again.

          Had the money been spent earlier in quarantining – however which way – and controlling the “left too late stampede” to NZ, after Covid19 had really started to move, we would be in a much better economic situation now. Like , almost normal, except for no tourism; and yes I am glad to have our country back from the tourists.

          As usual we must look to our good land and concentrate on farming. I would like to think it becomes more organic and sustainable, which would engage a lot more people in producing livestock and horticultural products. As usual farming is the most economical way we produce exportable products to pay for only the NECESSARY imports we require.

          • Treetop 7.1.1.2.1

            Closing the border any sooner could have caused an up roar. There had to be evidence to show that community transmission was occurring for people to wake up.

            It is reassuring to know that in NZ a person will not go hungry unless they cannot afford to purchase food. As for being able to acquire most items they could be produced here. Medication and medical equitment would need to be imported along with vehicles.

            A BIG rethink on tourism is required as no one wants a tourist to be a carrier of a virus which can be so destructive. The days of tourism being good economically are gone until Covid-19 is fully understood.

            As a side issue 36 million people are now unemployed in the US and medical workers are being laid off and their health insurance is being stopped, reported on Aljazeera TV today. The lines of motor vehicles queuing for food was in the 100s.

            There is a lot to be grateful for in NZ even with the hard times many people are going through.

      • McFlock 7.1.2

        I'm getting a bit fed up with the "sparsely populated" line that serves only to minimise our efforts (and I mean everyone in the country).

        Sure, we have a low overall population density, but we have a higher urbanisation rate that the UK and USA, so it's not like we're evenly spread with 18 people and a hundred sheep each square kilometre.

        We've had a lot of good luck, to be sure: off the beaten track enough to get our community infection a little bit later than other nations (this gave us time to learn from the mistakes of others) and a competent leadership, for example.

        But with different leaders (and yes, it might just be down to thanking Winston for choosing Labour/Greens) or a bunch of imbeciles listening to a semi-literate cheeto, we'd be pretty much as fucked as UK/USA/Italy and counting our dead by the hundreds or even thousands.

        We could have all gone to the fucking beach but no, we fucking did the work. Putting it all down to luck or popul;ation density screws everyone out of their share of credit for hard work, not just the government.

        • weka 7.1.2.1

          totally agree. And going forward too, all the effort being put into contact tracing and making work places and public places safer.

        • Stunned Mullet 7.1.2.2

          Sigh… different (NZ) leaders would make little difference, we followed the pandemic plan as directed by the Ministry of Health.

          The majority of our clusters and cases were down to returning travellers. You will note most of the greatest infection and loss of life overseas has cluttered around high density population and spread from there.

          Probably our greatest piece of luck was that the cruise ship that disgorged multiple carriers in Sydney didn't do the same thing in downtown Auckland.

          In a couple fo years time the global public health officials will be able to look back and see what has been the most appropriate response to this virus I expect that sealing off an area prior to significant introduction of viral carriers and then greatly decreasing human interaction will feature strongly.

          • McFlock 7.1.2.2.1

            We had a good pandemic plan, but one that still had to be adapted. It didn't include the concept of elimination, for example.

            Leadership is not irrelevant. Would Bridges or Blinglish have gone for lockdown too late, or come out of it too early? Probably not as badly as bojo or the yank, but the nats would have been more vulnerable to industry whinging than the coalition, I think. Not to mention Collins at the cabinet table. And would either of the BBs have communicated well enough to keep NZers on the same page, or would we have seen more noncompliance ruining it for everyone? What about the review of contact tracing – would the nats have commissioned and embraced a critical report, or would they have allowed institutional push-back and argued everything in that area was ok? There were multiple action choices like that, and the government chose correctly most of the time, enough to make us world leaders.

            I don't for one minute think the nats would have been as bad as bojo or the yank, but there's an exponential penalty for failure in this situation. that means their outcomes could well have been closer to a UK than our current toll.

  8. ianmac 8

    On a personal scale I sympathise with the disaster facing the Tourist trade given that good conscientious workers will be unemployed. But the damage to the Environment and infrastructure makes me totally unsympathetic to the Industry. Especially their spokespeople shouting for Government/taxpayers support in spite of the terminal nature of their plight.

    A bit like feeling sympathy for the top All Blacks but being anti the Tour.

    • Dennis Frank 8.1

      Yeah, the bleating. Capitalism is based on a boom & bust cycle – thought everyone knew that. The tourist industry has had the boom & have now entered the bust. Get real time. Whining about the size of the govt handout just demonstrates petulance. They deserve to have the govt appoint David Seymour to lecture them in person about market forces & the benefit of discipline…

    • weka 8.2

      I have little sympathy for the big players and the industry leaders. It's not like climate change is a secret or new and they've been as bad as industrial farming in terms of resisting reality.

    • Treetop 8.3

      There are limits on what the government can do to help a business survive. The government cannot become a silent partner and bail out a business which relies on tourists when there are no tourists. Anyone who loses their job deserves sympathy and a benefit to survive.

    • mpledger 8.4

      When ever I went to tourist destinations, the workers were invariably young overseas visitors. It will be interesting to see how may unemployed NZers were in the tourist industry.

      We really have to encourage the young and the fit to take a hit for the country and do some of the crappy jobs that bring in export dollars – horticulture, agriculture etc. Maybe if we can give them some other reward for putting their career aspirations on hold e.g. free tuition at uni/polytechs for every year of doing crappy jobs.

  9. Pat 9

    Given we are daily learning about this virus the thought had crossed my mind …what if there is an as yet unrealised impact on fertility?

    • Stunned Mullet 9.1

      With around 300k births per day globally that would be a global boon albeit an individual tragedy.

    • Treetop 9.2

      Not just fertility but a healthy pregnancy. Due to the virus not being around in its current form for more than six months, so much is unknown.

      Even transmission at birth is a high risk. Not a good start for a mother and the baby.

      • Incognito 9.2.1

        Women with HIV can have healthy babies without infecting them. A HIV test is done when pregnant.

        • Treetop 9.2.1.1

          Antivirals have proven to have a good outcome for HIV. This is also wanted for Covid-19.

          A vaccine or an effective treatment is needed for Covid-19.

          • Incognito 9.2.1.1.1

            Agreed. Three things though: 1) HIV infection/disease is preventable and manageable; 2) it has taken a long time to develop an effective treatment for HIV; 3) HIV cannot be cured although there are a couple of reported cures, apparently, after stem cell transplantation.

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    23 hours ago
  • 2024 Reading Summary: February (+ Writing Update)
    Completed reads for February: Tarzan of the Apes, by E.R. Burroughs The Lost World, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle The Poison Belt, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Struwwelpeter: Merry Stories and Funny Pictures, by Heinrich Hoffman The Moon Hoax, by Richard Adams Locke The Strange Voyage and Adventures of ...
    23 hours ago
  • Aoteraoa, Ukraine, and Gaza
    Today the government designated the political wing of Hamas as a terrorist entity, making supporting them a criminal offence. I honestly don't know much about Hamas' organisation, or how involved its politicians were in planning its crimes in October last year, but when Israel is actively carrying out a genocide ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    24 hours ago
  • ETS review will be good news (we think) for the forest sector but govt gets tough with Hamas and Isr...
    Buzz from the Beehive When the Luxon government took office last year, forest owners and investors were among the myriads of interest groups who pressed incoming ministers with pleadings, urgings and advice – typically self-serving –  for change. The forestry bunch hoped the new government would give clearer direction on ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    1 day ago
  • Tougher Love.
    "Ullo, ullo, ullo, what's coming off here then?" Mark Mitchell’s Gang Laws are separating the Liberal Sheep from the Authoritarian Goats.  THE INTENSIFYING POLITICAL CONTROVERSY over the Coalition Government’s policy on gangs promises to be one of those sheep-from-goats moments. While the Left will veer instinctively towards the sociological, the Right ...
    1 day ago
  • The Clue Is In The Name.
    Truth In Advertising? The Nats do best when they take the “National” part of their name seriously, WHEN ITS FOUNDERS christened New Zealand’s newest anti-socialist party “National”, they had two objectives. The first was largely cosmetic. The second, and much more important objective, was ideological.In 1936, the year in which ...
    1 day ago
  • Another forced break.
    Well, the time has come yet again for my son to go back into Starship for another major surgery (the fourth in five months). The mass in his chest is growing and has enveloped his left carotid artery as well … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • BRYCE EDWARDS:  How Wellington City Council got captured by vested interests
    Bryce Edwards writes – Wellington City has become a great case study for those that are suspicious that both local and central government politicians have become enthralled by property developers, the “professional managerial class”, and other vested interests. Politicians from parties of both left and right are increasingly ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 day ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the Newshub/Smokefree twin fiascos
    H</spanere’s a tale of two sunset industries. One has a track record of quality investigative reporting, and sound reportage of the 24/7 news cycle. The other sunset industry peddles a deadly substance that kills and injures tens of thousands of New Zealanders every year, while imposing significant annual costs on ...
    1 day ago
  • RBNZ's dovish pivot revives rate cut hopes
    The question now is which hint banks will take: the one from Orr that they pass on rate cuts, or the one from Assistant Governor Karen Silk saying they have some leeway to continue not passing them on. File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The Reserve Bank held the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • That was Then, This is Now #32 – What's the difference between aluminium and democracy?
    ..Thanks for reading Frankly Speaking ! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.That was then…Rio Tinto will not reimburse the $30 million Government subsidy it received to keep Tiwai Point open, in spite of posting a $3.7 billion 2013 profit.[…]…if Rio Tinto had closed straightaway and ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 day ago
  • A Market Model for Intercity Rail
    The North Island Main Trunk rail line between Auckland and Wellington is 680km long, mostly electrified, and low speed for intercity rail (80-100kph). It’s a major public asset, but woefully underutilised. How can we work this asset harder, to deliver way more benefits for our country and our people? This ...
    Greater AucklandBy Patrick Reynolds
    1 day ago
  • Redundancies Bite.
    We all knew this government meant redundancies - lots of them. National highlighted they’d be taking a scalpel to government departments, cutting them to the bone. ACT fantasized about going deeper.Thousands losing their jobs in a sector that won’t be hiring any time soon. I could make a joke here ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 day ago
  • Tough choices on climate change for new government
    Slowly but inexorably, the country is getting to the point where it is going to have to make some tough choices about actually lowering greenhouse gas emissions rather than planting or buying its way out of them. Prime Minister Christopher Luxon, at the weekend, removed any last hope that climate ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 day ago
  • That was Then, This is Now #31 – Urgent for me, but not for thee?
    ..Thanks for reading Frankly Speaking ! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.That was then…“In Parliament today, Labour was pushed to justify their use of urgency to rush through a Bill to get rid of a public veto on Māori wards, and they couldn’t,” National’s Local ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • Rattus Supermarketicus: Countdown Reopens
    So my infamously rat-infested local supermarket was finally able to re-open today, after spending a good two and a half weeks closed. https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/510363/countdown-dunedin-south-reopens-after-rat-infestation I went in for a look this evening, having heard that they were offering chocolates earlier in the day. I was disappointed. No chocolates. ...
    2 days ago
  • Clearly still no adults in this Chaos Cabinet, aiming to sell Aotearoa off to the highest bidders…
    Grant Roberston has left the Labour team in Parliament, Efeso Collins tragically died at the outset of what was surely to be a stellar career as an MP… a heavy result last year, losses and a tragedy to start this year. That overall sense of tragedy is not limited ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 days ago
  • Productivity Commission gone tomorrow, Māori Health Authority gone in June – so what should we do...
    The Productivity Commission will cease operations tomorrow, to make way for the new Ministry for Regulation. On the same day, the Waitangi Tribunal will begin an urgent inquiry into the government’s proposal to disestablish the Māori Health Authority. But legislation passed under urgency by Parliament will result in the authority being ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    2 days ago
  • QUESTIONNAIRE NEW ZEALAND
    So you want to be a member of this exciting new government, eh? Good thinking! There’s obviously no future in journalism. We’re not just hiring any old comms person though. We want someone with the right attitude and MOJO. So grab a pen and fill out this questionnaire will you? ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 days ago
  • Another secret OIA “consultation”
    When the previous government decided in 2018 to review the OIA, the Ministry of Justice decided to do the entire thing in secret, planning a "targeted consultation" with a secret, hand-picked group of lawyers, bloggers and commentators. Because obviously, wider civil society has no interest in the operation of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Puff! And before you can get through a packet of 20, Parliament will have stubbed out parts of Labo...
    Buzz from the Beehive Health dominated the government’s announcements over the past 24 hour or so, at the same time as Parliament was debating legislation to abolish the Maori Health Authority and repeal parts of the previous government’s planned changes to regulate smoked tobacco. Health Minister Shane Reti brandished a ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    2 days ago
  • Journalism in New Zealand Is Collapsing
    Hi,I was not intending to send out a Webworm today, and I hate that I am having to write about this.After nearly 35 years of broadcasting, the TV newsroom in New Zealand that was my home for about a decade is set to close in June.Some of my closest and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 days ago
  • A revolting breach of Te Tiriti
    In 2019, the Waitangi Tribunal released a preliminary report in the Wai 2575 inquiry, finding pervasive inequities in the New Zealand health system which systematically disadvantaged Māori, in breach of Ti Tiriti O Waitangi. It recommended the creation of an independent Māori Health Authority as one way of remedying these ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Bishop wants house prices to halve vs income
    TL;DR: Housing, Infrastructure and RMA Reform minister Minister Chris Bishop gave the new Government’s most important and ambitious speech of its first 100 days yesterday, pledging to flood cities with land for homes and help give councils new revenue to pay for the water and transport infrastructure needed to build ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Lyin' Luxon
    All we want is a touch of truthnot cue-card words for the polling booththis ballhead man and his MacDonalds wisdomselling soap or a new tax systemSo begin the lyrics for the new single, Lyin’ Luxon (and his tobacco goons)”, from Darren Watson - released just this morning. You can check ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • Albo gives Luxon a big invite
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon gets his first big foreign affairs opportunity next week when he travels to Melbourne for the 50th Anniversary of Australia’s partnership with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has invited the heads of all ten members for a special summit. ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 days ago
  • Of Mining Interests and the West Coast-Tasman Result: Look at the Split Vote
    The various New Zealand election donations have been disclosed, and one Jonathan Milne has noticed the role of mining interests in backing an independent candidate on the West Coast: https://newsroom.co.nz/2024/02/23/big-coal-company-bought-west-coast-election-campaign/ The article goes on to suggest that the independent candidate’s performance – garnering some 5903 votes – was key ...
    3 days ago
  • At a glance – Is Greenland gaining or losing ice?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    3 days ago
  • Dark money has entered the New Zealand electoral scene at unprecedented levels
    Radio NZ’s Farah Hancock has analysed the Electoral Commission returns of money paid to influence the 2023 NZ General Election. Her article $2m surge in election campaign spending by third-party groups (RNZ) shows that as well as the huge donations-directly-to-the-parties imbalance, previously reported, a large amount of untraceable dark money ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    3 days ago
  • I remember better days
    The school property system is BORDERING ON CRISIS according to the Prime Minister and his Education Minister.Same old crisis panic button. God only knows what they’ll press when they get a real one.The self-serving agenda here is pretty transparent: Find ourselves an out for not delivering what people expect us ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    3 days ago
  • No, it isn’t a surprise – the government is disestablishing the Māori Health Authority (just a...
    Latest from the Beehive The mainstream news media have been grimly auguring this news for  the past few days under headings such as… Axing Māori Health Authority before hearing ‘disrespectful’ — expert (One News); Coalition Government to forge ahead with repeal of smokefree laws, Māori Health Authority this week ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    3 days ago
  • BRYCE EDWARDS: NZ elections are being Americanised with “dark money” flowing into campaign grou...
    Bryce Edwards writes –  Elections in the United States are dominated by big money. But what isn’t commonly understood is that most of it is raised and spent, not by the political parties and candidates for office, but by special interest groups who run their own election campaigns to ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • More dishonesty from Costello
    When Cancer Minister Casey Costello was caught lying to the media and to Parliament about whether or not she had requested advice on cutting tobacco excise tax to benefit the cancer industry, her explanation was to blame "confusion arising from my understanding of the differentiation between seeking specific advice and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • LINDSAY MITCHELL: Child poverty – complex or simple?
    Question: Do you understand how the child poverty statistics are derived? Clearly some people do not. Last week the latest child poverty statistics were all over the media. But there are a number of misunderstandings that need addressing. Like this one from NewstalkZB’s John MacDonald who wrote: Living in households ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER: Tougher love
    Mark Mitchell’s gang laws will separate the liberal sheep from the authoritarian goats Chris Trotter writes – THE INTENSIFYING POLITICAL CONTROVERSY over the Coalition Government’s policy on gangs promises to be one of those sheep-from-goats moments. While the Left will veer instinctively towards the sociological, the Right ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • Bernard's Top 10 @ 10 am 'pick 'n' mix' for Feb 27
    A mega-documentary about the influence of China’s Communist Party in our political system that remains stuck inside Stuff’s editorial system. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāHere’s my top ten links to news, papers and reports elsewhere as at 10 am on Tuesday February 27:Today’s must-read: Whatever happened to Stuff Circuit’s ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The day our infrastructure deficits came home to roost
    Ugly moments of infrastructure deficit truth are popping up all over, including the revelation that Wellington’s train service will be disrupted for up to 15 years. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: National and Labour are bickering over who is to blame for ‘mismanagement’ of infrastructure spending on rail and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • It’s March Madness Time again
    We may still be in February but yesterday marked the start of March Madness, typically the busiest time of the year for transport of all modes. That’s due to a number of factors, such as: The summer holiday period is over meaning All schools and now University’s being ...
    3 days ago
  • What do you think about Christopher Luxon?
    As some of you might know Darren Watson's new track "Lyin' Luxon" will be out tomorrow.I'm going to write about that subject today so if there's anything you'd like to say about Luxon, his government, policies, his partners and investors, or what he's doing to our country then please feel ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • A TV Hero Goes Down the Wormhole
    Note: This story includes feedback from a central character in this story — I’ve included that at the end in its entirety.Hi,When I started Webworm four years ago, it seemed like a novelty to write about people getting sucked into beliefs like QAnon. As Kiwi lingerie makers opened their third ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    3 days ago
  • Climate Adam: Are food influencers wrong about climate change?
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). The food industry is one of the biggest drivers of climate change. So how are our diets causing disaster? Some people ...
    4 days ago
  • Funding announced for landfill improvements and farmers – but the headline grabber is news of a cr...
    Buzz from the Beehive The government has been dishing out sums of money in much the same way as the Ardern-Hipkins government has done. Four historic landfill sites will benefit from the granting of $6.6 million to clean up old landfill sites And the coalition Government is  providing support for ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    4 days ago
  • Yes, voters supported the scrapping of the Māori Health Authority – but Stuff reminds us of the W...
    Reinforcing the credence of an article posted here last week, Stuff yet again has been promoting the notion that “The Treaty” should over-ride the country’s democratic governance arrangements. In the article published on Point of Order under the headline Media chiefs struggle to understand democracy, Graham Adams noted that New ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    4 days ago
  • Executive summaries
    Here in the seaside village, we have people of all callings.We have butchers, bakers, candlestick makers. We have panelbeaters, librarians and sailors.We have novelists, poets and the guy who wrote Six Months in A Leaky Boat.And of course, we have executives. It is, you assume, for such people—our executives, living in ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • An anti-constitutional government
    Aotearoa has a lot of problems at the moment: climate change, housing, water, rich people refusing to pay their way. So of course the government has decided to crack down on gangs, as a distraction from all of the above. Their proposals violate the freedoms of expression and association, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • ROGER PARTRIDGE: Has the Supreme Court lost its way?
      Roger Partridge writes –  With age comes wisdom – or so it is said. Yet exceptions abound. A notable reflection from leading lawyer Jack Hodder on the Supreme Court’s 20th anniversary suggests the Court is ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    4 days ago
  • BRIAN EASTON: Do we take Regulatory Impact Statements seriously?
    The Sorry Story of Earthquake-Prone Buildings * Brian Easton writes – The Treasury requires that when new or amended legislation is proposed, a Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) be provided – ‘a high-level summary of the problem being addressed, the options and their associated costs and benefits, the consultation undertaken, and the ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    4 days ago
  • Bernard's Top 10 @ 10 am 'pick 'n' mix'
    Here’s my top ten links to news, papers and reports elsewhere as at 10 am on Monday February 26:Today’s must-read: How one miner’s political donation changed an electorate result. Newsroom Jonathan MilneLocal scoop: Car dealers cash in on EV subsidies for ‘company cars’ RNZ Eloise GibsonOverseas scoop: Meta pushed ahead ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • February-24 AT Board Meeting
    Tomorrow the AT board have their first meeting of the year. it will also be the first meeting for new chair Richard Leggat. You can watch the open session on this Teams link with the meeting due to start at 10am. As usual, I’ve taken a look through the reports ...
    4 days ago
  • Mark Mitchell – Mercenary Man.
    Before Mark Mitchell was known for not being able to keep to the official party line on police numbers. Even further back, before Mitchell’s brainfart that he could stop the gangs by making them wear makeup over their tattoos. Back before he was even an MP, Mark Mitchell was a ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Will the RBNZ upset NZ Inc's applecart?
    After contemplating the inflationary pressures of the first 100 days of the new Government, the RBNZ may decide it needs to hike on Wednesday. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Te Pūtea Matua, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, could shock our political economy with a rate hike this Wednesday ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Shane Jones’ fast track is not what the Nats’ base wants to hear about
    If anybody stole the show at National’s Blue Greens Forum at the weekend at Waitangi, it was Environment Minister Penny Simmonds. When she said she had re-directed millions from staff training in Wellington to local conservation boards in the regions, she was greeted with widespread applause. She had hit the ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    4 days ago
  • Ending Free Prescriptions and Elections Having Consequences
    So National won the 2023 election, and since then has set about doing exactly what it’d say it’d do – screwing over poor people and workers. One of their more spiteful election promises, the restoration of fees on prescription medicines, has yet to pass, but there is little doubt they’ll ...
    5 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #08
    A listing of 31 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, Feb 18, 2024 thru Sat, Feb 24, 2024. Story of the week “In the tropical eastern Atlantic, it’s four months ahead of pace—it’s looking like it’s already June out ...
    5 days ago
  • Slow train of accountability for Cameron Slater
    It’s an adage, almost a cliche: ‘Justice delayed is Justice denied’, but genuinely, that has to be one’s response to news this last week: That dirty PR attack blogger Cameron Slater has (finally) been judged in the High Court to have defamed Auckland businessman Matt Blomfield. Further, that Slater’s false ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    5 days ago
  • Not political in the slightest
    In one way it was phenomenally dull, in another fascinating. He had never met people with such certainty before. Jews and Catholics were less. Irish ugly, Chinese and Aborigines not even human. They did not think such things. They knew them.The Narrow Road to The Deep North Richard Flanagan Wellington ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER: Democracy denied
    Political Intervention From Above: From the early-1970s on, lobbying firms and think-tanks have grown like Topsy all across the capitalist world. Had the progressive middle-class not drawn its teeth and clipped its claws, an angry working-class might have risen to meet the Robber Baron’s challenge as it did in the 1890s, ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • Aotearoa Divided.
    Hey, hey, heyThere's no need to panicThis is just how it isYour pulse is fast and franticAnd it feels like you'll explodePanic isn’t the right word, although sometimes I feel a bit that way when I think about things. Despair is probably more accurate. And sadness. Those are the things ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to Feb 23
    Luxon says Kiwis need to face the ‘brutal facts of our reality’, but the evidence shows our financial position is nowhere near as troubling as in 1991 and even if it were, the advice of the ‘financial grown-ups’ of the world is to avoid pointless austerity measures. Photo: Lynn Grieveson ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Hell of a week
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past week’s editions.Friday: Week in review, quiz style1. What did the Atlas Network do in Aotearoa this week?a. Got a tobacco whistleblower firedb. Got Michael Bassett to ghost-write legislation c. Planted Kompromat on John Campbell d. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Media chiefs struggle to understand democracy
    Graham Adams writes — Listening to Sinead Boucher speak last week at a parliamentary hearing on the Fair Digital News Bargaining Bill, it was easy to be captivated momentarily by her rhetoric about democracies requiring a strong and free media. Addressing the select committee MPs, she said: “A strong, ...
    Point of OrderBy gadams1000
    7 days ago

  • Government supports safer digital transactions
    The Government supports the recommendations of the Finance and Expenditure Committee reports on bank scam processes, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Andrew Bayly says. “Scams are becoming more sophisticated and causing a growing number of vulnerable Kiwis significant emotional harm and financial loss. “Altogether, nearly $200 million was lost to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    40 mins ago
  • Government congratulates JPs on centenary
    Associate Minister of Justice Nicole McKee has extended her congratulations to the Royal Federation of New Zealand Justices’ Associations on its centenary this year. The occasion is being celebrated at the Federation’s annual AGM and Conference, which opens in Wellington today.  “Justices of the Peace (JPs) play a vital role ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Government going after gangs’ guns with FPOs
    The Government is continuing its work to restore law and order, announcing new measures that will enable police to crack down on gangs through Firearms Prohibition Orders (FPOs).  “Firearms are being illegally used by gangs to intimidate, to commit violent crime in support of their profit making, and to initiate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Open ocean salmon farm a win for the economy
    The final approval of New Zealand King Salmon’s Blue Endeavour open ocean aquaculture project is a significant step for New Zealand’s aquaculture, and a win for the economy, Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones says.  “Blue Endeavour will be the first open ocean aquaculture salmon farm in New Zealand. It’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • NZ – UAE trade agreement consultation begins
    Following a meeting with UAE Trade Minister Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi at the WTO Ministerial Conference in Abu Dhabi, Trade Minister Todd McClay has launched public consultation for a trade agreement between New Zealand and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).   “The UAE is a top-20 export market for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Minister thanks Public Service Commissioner
    Public Service Minister Nicola Willis has thanked retiring Public Service Commissioner Peter Hughes for his 43 years of service. Mr Hughes retires today, after serving eight years as Public Service Commissioner.  “Peter Hughes is an outstanding public servant who has served many governments, regardless of their political leaning, with professionalism and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Tourism data shows determination of sector
    New tourism data out today shows the continued importance of tourism to the New Zealand economy as tourism steps up to become our second-biggest export earner, Tourism Minister Matt Doocey says. “The Tourism Satellite Account shows how strongly tourism rebounded post-pandemic with total tourism expenditure in New Zealand of $37.7b ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Housing Minister thanks outgoing Kāinga Ora Chair
    Housing Minister Chris Bishop has today thanked outgoing Kāinga Ora – Homes & Communities Chair Vui Mark Gosche for his many years of public service. “Mr Gosche tendered his resignation as Chair yesterday evening. He will remain a member of the Board until the end of March,” says Housing Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New sanctions package against Russia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced a new package of sanctions as part of the ongoing international sanction response to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.   The new sanctions are:   Implementation of the G7-plus price cap on Russian-origin oil; making explicit the prohibition on exporting restricted ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Travel bans on extremist Israeli settlers
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced travel bans on a number of extremist Israeli settlers who have committed violent attacks against Palestinians in the West Bank.   “New Zealand is seriously concerned by the significant increase in extremist violence perpetrated by Israeli settlers against Palestinian populations in recent months. This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ designates entirety of Hamas as terrorist entity
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced today the designation of Hamas in its entirety as a terrorist entity.   “The terrorist attacks by Hamas in October 2023 were brutal and we have unequivocally condemned them,” Mr Luxon says.    Following these attacks, then Prime Minister Chris Hipkins commissioned advice from officials about designating the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government announces independent review of forestry ETS costs
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay has today announced an independent review into the forestry component of the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) Register to ensure it is efficient and cost-effective. “Up and down the country forestry owners have been raising concerns about the excessive costs that have been imposed upon them by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Access barriers to PET-CT scans removed
    New Zealanders now have the same access to PET-CT scans no matter where they live, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says. Health New Zealand - Te Whatu Ora has approved funding an updated national set of criteria that will allow for about 1,000 more PET-CT scans a year to be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines’ alliance extended
    Associate Transport Minister Matt Doocey announced today that the Government has extended Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines’ strategic alliance for another five years. “Reauthorising this strategic partnership means that passengers flying in and out of New Zealand will continue to have access to a wide range of flights and destinations,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Health system reforms need further action
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says the latest report into New Zealand’s health reforms shows a few benefits, but overall once again demonstrates a lack of leadership by the previous Labour government.  The Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) report released today was commissioned by the previous government to provide an independent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Parallel assessment means new medicines assessed sooner
    Pharmac is changing its process so it can assess a funding application at the same time Medsafe is assessing the application for regulatory approval. This means that medicines will be able to be considered for funding sooner in New Zealand. “Access to medicines is a crucial part of many Kiwis’ ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Smokefree Amendment Bill Introduced
    The Government has today introduced an Amendment Bill that will repeal three parts of the previous Government’s planned changes to regulate smoked tobacco. “The Coalition Government is committed to the Smokefree 2025 goal, but we are taking a different regulatory approach to reducing smoking rates and the harm from smoking,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Targeted support for young people
    Recently allocated Ministry of Youth Development funding will support more than 6700 young people to receive targeted youth development support to remain in education or transition to further training or employment and improve their wellbeing, Youth Minister Matt Doocey says.  Funding of $10.69 million will be allocated to 34 community-based ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Reshaping the health system to bring Māori health closer to home
    Legislation that will disestablish the Māori Health Authority will be introduced in Parliament today, heralding the start of a new vision for Māori health says Minister of Health Dr Shane Reti.  “We have said we will bring healthcare for all New Zealanders closer to the home and closer to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to the Wellington Chamber of Commerce
    Acknowledgements Good morning. Can I start by acknowledging Simon and the team at the Chamber. Thanks for the invitation to be here today. Introduction In October last year New Zealanders voted for change. The Coalition government was elected with a clear mandate to rebuild the economy and reduce the cost ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ welcomes Australia and Brazil to agreements
    New Zealand has welcomed Australia to the Inclusive Trade Action Group (ITAG) and Australia and Brazil to the Global Trade and Gender Arrangement (GTAGA) Minister for Trade Todd McClay says.  As the current chair of ITAG and GTAGA, Minister McClay hosted the signing ceremony and issued the Abu Dhabi Joint ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Inquiry announced into school property
    The Government will conduct a Ministerial Inquiry to address problems with the school property system where the scope of property works planned was unrealistic and unaffordable. “The coalition Government has inherited a school property system bordering on crisis,” Education Minister Erica Stanford says. “There have been a number of cost escalations ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Chair for Guardians of NZ Superannuation
    Company director and investor John Williamson has been appointed as the new Chair of the Guardians of New Zealand Superannuation, the Crown entity that oversees the NZ Super Fund and the Elevate NZ Venture Capital Fund, Finance Minister Nicola Willis announced today.  Mr Williamson will take up his new position ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Northland open for business as critical works to repair SH1 Brynderwyn Hills begin
    The Government is encouraging New Zealanders to support, visit, and explore Northland, as the closure and detour of SH1 at the Bryderwyn Hills begins, and critical repair work by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) gets underway, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Many regions across the country suffered extensive and devastating ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government backs police to crackdown on gangs
    The coalition Government is restoring law and order by providing police new tools to crack down on criminal gangs, says Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Police Minister Mark Mitchell.  “Over the last five years gangs have recruited more than 3000 members, a 51 per cent increase. At the same time, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Northland’s new Kāeo Bridge officially open
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed the official opening of the new State Highway 10 (SH10) Kāeo Bridge, which will improve safety and traffic flow for people heading to and from the Far North. “This is an important piece of infrastructure for the Northland region that will help members of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government grants $6.6 million to clean up old landfill sites
    The Government has granted $6.6 million to clean up four historic New Zealand landfill and dump sites vulnerable to extreme weather events and coastal erosion. At the BlueGreens Forum in Paihia today Environment Minister Penny Simmonds said that the Contaminated Sites Remediation Fund grants will go towards fixing former landfills ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Dry weather triggers extra support for farmers and growers across the top of the South Island
    The coalition Government is providing support for farmers and growers as dry conditions worsen across the top of the South Island. “Conditions on the ground across the Marlborough, Tasman, and Nelson districts are now extremely dry and likely to get worse in the coming months,” Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Trade Minister heads to Abu Dhabi for key WTO negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay travels to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates for the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) today, to take up his role as Vice Chair of the negotiations. The Ministerial Conference is the highest decision-making body within the WTO and meets every ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Appointment round for King’s Counsel announced
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced an appointment round for King’s Counsel will take place in 2024. Appointments of King’s Counsel are made by the Governor-General on the recommendation of the Attorney-General and with the concurrence of the Chief Justice. The Governor-General retains the discretion to appoint King’s Counsel in recognition ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Retiring Chief of Navy thanked for his service
    Defence Minister Judith Collins has thanked the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral David Proctor, for his service as he retires from the Royal New Zealand Navy after 37 years. Rear Admiral Proctor will retire on 16 May to take up an employment opportunity in Australia.  “I would like to thank ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Indonesian Vice President to visit New Zealand
    Indonesia’s Vice President Ma’ruf Amin will visit New Zealand next week, the first here by an Indonesian leader since 2018, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters has announced. “New Zealand and Indonesia have a strong partnership,” Mr Peters says.  “The Vice President’s visit is an opportunity to discuss how we can strengthen ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government boost to fight against caulerpa
    The battle to contain the fast-spreading exotic caulerpa seaweed has today received a $5 million boost to accelerate the development of removal techniques, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The time is now to really lean in and build on the work of Biosecurity New Zealand, mana whenua, communities and local ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister attending Australian data, digital meeting
    Minister for Digitising Government Judith Collins is in Sydney to attend the first Data and Digital Ministers’ Meeting of 2024.  “This is a great opportunity to connect with our Australian counterparts and identify how we can work together on digital transformation,” Ms Collins says.   “Both our nations are looking into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Appointments to Antarctica New Zealand Board
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has appointed Leon Grice and Heather Simpson to serve on the Antarctica New Zealand board.  “Since taking office, the Coalition Government has become concerned about the direction of the Scott Base Redevelopment Project,” Mr Peters says.  “It is vital that Antarctica New Zealand has the right ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Strengthening the Single Economic Market
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis has met with Australian Treasurer Jim Chalmers to discuss the opportunities to lower business costs and increase the ease with which businesses and people can operate across the Tasman.     “I have met with Treasurer Chalmers and shared our new Government’s ambitious economic goals, our plans ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government to address business payment practices
    The Government will repeal the Business Payment Practices Act 2023, Small Business and Manufacturing Minister Andrew Bayly announced today. “There is a major problem with large market players imposing long payment terms and routinely paying invoices late. “However, the Business Payment Practices Act is not an effective solution and would ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Greater focus on work will reduce child poverty
    Worsening child poverty rates support the Coalition Government’s focus on reducing the cost of living and getting people into work, Child Poverty Reduction Minister Louise Upston says. Figures released by Stats NZ today show child poverty rates have increased, with the rising cost of living, driven by inflation, making it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ announces new support for Ukraine
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins have marked two years since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by announcing further support and sanctions, and extending our military assistance. “Russia launched its illegal, full-scale invasion of Ukraine, in blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter,” Mr Peters says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Finalists of Ahuwhenua Trophy announced
    Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka announced the two finalists for this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy at Parliament yesterday.  “I am pleased to see such a high calibre of Māori dairy farms featured as finalists this year,” Mr Potaka says. The finalists for 2024 are: Wairarapa Moana ki Pouakani Whakatōhea Māori Trust ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago

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