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Efficient market hypothesis

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, June 20th, 2012 - 87 comments
Categories: bill english, energy, privatisation - Tags:

Bill English has attacked the MED numbers showing that private electricity companies are 12% more expensive than public ones saying that argument assumes “that hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders are systematically paying more for electricity than they could?”. Um… Has English heard of Powerswitch? That multi-million dollar government campaign is based on exactly that premise.

87 comments on “Efficient market hypothesis”

  1. Gosman 1

    Some really good comments on this blog post from Kiwiblog from a commentator who works in the industry

    http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2012/06/debunking_the_lies_about_power_prices.html#comments

    • Zetetic 1.1

      Try looking at the actual data. I know that’s not consistent with the right’s faith based policy but give it a go

      • Gosman 1.1.1

        Do you disagree with the comments made by East Wellington Superhero? IF so what is wrong with his points?

        • ad 1.1.1.1

          Don’t always agree with you but great great link there Gosman.

          Very interesting commentator there. Makes me shed a few reasons against asset sales. But hold on to the main ones.

        • ad 1.1.1.2

          People, it’s worth looking at the unpcoming Commerce Commission hearing on airport landing charges as well.

          This Long Term Equilibrium theory has been trotted out in every submission. I honestly wonder if it only applies to utilities with massive Asset Management Plans who have really long investment plan and benefit horizons, and a really stable set of customers ie they are close to monopolies.

        • Deano 1.1.1.3

          Do you disagree with the data that shows that in most of the country, the most expensive retailers are private?

        • ghostwhowalksnz 1.1.1.4

          Superhero is obviously a staffer in Englishs office – “you wont be able to stop listening to his speech”
          A bit grandiose dont you think ? This is that Bill English hes talking about

          Anyway a lot of churn in switching retailers comes from people moving house. Plus the constant door to door sellers over the summer. That cant be cheap with commissions for each switch, doesnt mean they get cheaper prices just a deal to appear its happening

          • Gosman 1.1.1.4.1

            Oh it is quite obvious, just as it is quite obvious you are a cretin.

            • bbfloyd 1.1.1.4.1.1

              this coming from the moron who can’t grasp the concept of competition being viable only after the number of consumers has reached critical mass…. which nz hasn’t by a long chalk……. pretty much like every tory “intellectual” I have encountered in my life…..

              btw… don’t appreciate being directed to that pile of filth that seems is your natural home little durex gossomer……thank god i havn’t got smellavision on my computer…. would take days to get rid of the fecal stench…..

              • Draco T Bastard

                this coming from the moron who can’t grasp the concept of competition being viable only after the number of consumers has reached critical mass…

                Competition only works if it’s perfect:
                Everyone has perfect information (Omniscience)
                Everyone is capable of changing to any other job at a moments notice (Omnipotent?)
                There happens to be an infinite amount of resources to cater to the infinite amount of competition
                Pricing properly contains all costs

                If anyone of those things is not true then the competitive market becomes irrational.

                • NickS

                  Ah no, competition works in pretty much everything, even if there’s imperfect information, it’s just a case that the cost benefit ratio dives into the toilet in certain circumstances. Such as utilities, where the stable point of the market is local/regional monopolies which lead to rent-seeking activities.

                  And frankly, all decisions are irrational due to the impossibility of perfect knowledge /epistemology101

                  😛 😛 😛

                  What matters is in the decision rational in the context of the knowledge that’s relevant, available, true and not ignored.

                  *ahem*

                  But yeah, pricing needs much better transparency, and the electricity market in NZ really needs to go back to being a SOE with different regional branches instead of wasting money and resources competing against each other via marketing.

                  (Been absent due to helping out with support under the name The_Mess)

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Ah no, competition works in pretty much everything, even if there’s imperfect information…

                    If that were true then we wouldn’t have had a couple of centuries of recessions intermingled with a few depressions. The only prolonged prosperous period was after WWII with heavy regulation and limited competition (the whole lot still fell down though due to capitalisms need for growth and the limits used prevented that growth).

                    And frankly, all decisions are irrational due to the impossibility of perfect knowledge /epistemology101

                    True (in fact, that was my point) but we can make them less irrational if we regulate to ensure that everyone is working with the best knowledge available whether they themselves know it or not (we should also be making the knowledge available of course so that people can know it).

              • Gosman

                So any evidence supporting the view that there has to be a critical mass in a market and NZ is nowhere near it?

          • Vicky32 1.1.1.4.2

            That cant be cheap with commissions for each switch, doesnt mean they get cheaper prices just a deal to appear its happening

            That reminds me of the angry people on Fair Go, who’ve been sold a pup and persuaded to switch…
             

      • Glg 1.1.2

        Ha ha “faith based policy” that sums it up completely

    • DH 1.2

      The usual resource for power prices is the nz quarterly survey of domestic electricity prices which can be viewed here;

      http://www.med.govt.nz/sectors-industries/energy/electricity/prices/electricity-tariff-surveys/quarterly-survey

      Strange how Treasury use the consumer website when a govt department has the full stats available. Maybe that’s because the survey shows the private providers consistently charging more.

    • Huginn 1.3

      Hi Gosman, sorry about my late response to your request for response to this.

      I read East Wellington Superhero’s comments – at your suggestion – and I think that he, or she is disingenuous.

      Electricity markets are highly complex – the most highly complex in the energy sector.

      This is the domain of uber-geeks and quants. Fortunately, I can spare you my own attempts to describe some of the issues by directing you to this powerpoint presentation from AU’s School of Engineering’s Electricity Power Optimization Center:

      http://www.epoc.org.nz/presentations/energyshowcase.ppt
      http://www.epoc.org.nz/

      One of the problems is that the way that the market doesn’t work very well. It’s not ‘well behaved’ and that’s why it’s just not good enough for an’ industry insider’ to say that electricity prices are determined by competition between providers in the retail sector in a deeply imperfect market like the electricity sector.

      Also, and this is just an aside, East Wellington Superhero is wrong when he says:
      ‘I note the NZ Herald says that electricity prices in the USA are even lower. How many government-owned power companies does the USA have? Not many I’d venture.’

      For example, almost all the electricity and gas utilities in California are community or municipality owned. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), the largest municipal utility in the United States, used to be privately owned but was taken over by the State towards the end of the 20th Century because it wasn’t serving the interests of the people of that state.

  2. Afewknowthetruth 2

    In western societies the purpose of government is to facilitate the transfer wealth from ‘the people’ into the hands of a few individuals, to ensure that the money-lender scam is maintained, and to oversee the looting and polluting of the environment -whichever party is in power.

    The present government is doing spectacularly well on all counts.

    • Gosman 2.1

      Really???

      So in the sum of Western Society over the past 200 odd years, (since the development of the modern free market Capitalist system), the percentage of wealth in the hands of the few has increased by how much?

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        Are you advocating a return to the high wages and high employment of the 1960’s and 1970’s?

        • Gosman 2.1.1.1

          I’m not advocating anything CV. I am merely pointing out that Afewknowthetruth’s view about the purpose of government in western societies is completely and utterly bogus.

      • freedom 2.1.2

        Global info is difficult to pin down especially over a 200 year period, but here is a rational breakdown of the US over the last century, a Country that we cannot say we are all that different from in terms of wealth distribution.

        “According to the Drum Major Institute’s 2006 Injustice Index, the ratio of the average U.S. CEO annual pay to minimum wage worker’s is 821:1 whereas twenty years ago the ratio was 40:1. The richest 0.1% are vanishing off the chart because it would take a bar graph that stretched out of the building to represent them on a societal wealth distribution chart.”

        http://www.peakprosperity.com/forum/wealth-gap-and-collapse-us/24520

      • bbfloyd 2.1.3

        what a complete ignoramus you are little durex……not a shred of historical knowledge, and you presume to lecture those do possess sense, and knowledge…..

        I’ll take pity on you….. capatalism was the driving force behind the empire building expansion that exploded out of europe when?

        let’s see… columbus discovering america was when? cortez arriving in south america was when? the feudal system was replaced over a period of a century when?

        are you trying to tell us that slavery, was still operating in britain at the beginning of the 19th century? And that the peasant population were still serfs at that time….

        i suppose the industrial revolution that started centuries before that was founded on slave labour? And that the peasants transplanted off the land to work in the factories were press ganged by their owners, and they weren’t paid a penny?

        fuck you’re an ignorant fool…..

  3. captain hook 3

    it has increased by just that amount necessary for tory idiots to think that they know everything.

  4. captain hook 4

    to the arrogant overweening narcissistic desire of the right to own and control everything.
    wise up dude.

    • Gosman 4.1

      Is this directed to any particular post?

      • Jackal 4.1.1

        Don’t you mean comment? captain hook was obviously not responding to the post by James Henderson.

        The problem with the entire powerswitch regime is that the companies that are associated with National ministers drop their prices, the government pays for a bunch of advertising to get people to switch suppliers, and then they just increase prices again. In other words it’s a con to gain more market share for the power companies that the Nats have shares in.

        • Gosman 4.1.1.1

          Do you have any evidence for this highly uncompetitive behaviour?

          I don’t know what Captain Hook is replying to. It could very well be the topic post.

          • bbfloyd 4.1.1.1.1

            Ask a few actual people about their experiences regarding this practice little durex….. I can answer for myself that that has happened to me every time i’ve changed providers to try to get ballooning costs down.. the average period it has taken to become as, or more expensive has been three months……regardless of which company i used….

            but then.. operating in the real world isn’t a tory nitwits favored option…

  5. marsman 5

    Does Bill English have an answer as to why privatisation of electricity resulted in a 75% increase in power bills for domestic consumers? English probably hasn’t noticed as one imagines the old trougher makes the tax-payer foot his bill.

    • Gosman 5.1

      When was the electricity industry privatised? As far as I am aware it is largely in the hands of the State.

  6. Colonial Viper 6

    I’d laugh out loud if it turns out that English is one of those consumers paying more for their electricity at home than he needs to be.

    • Lanthanide 6.1

      For people on his kind of income, a few hundy here and there don’t make much difference.

  7. felix 7

    Yell out when Gosman’s fucked off and the thread becomes worthwhile, will you?

    • Gosman 7.1

      Might as well find another thread felix as I’m in this for the long haul 😉

      • vto 7.1.1

        Why? Some vested interest?

        • Gosman 7.1.1.1

          Yeah vto, I’m being paid big bucks by the Private energy sector to post Pro-privatisation messages on a hard left political blog that most people in the country haven’t even heard of let alone read.

          • quartz 7.1.1.1.1

            No, You’re EW Superhero and you work for the nats.

          • vto 7.1.1.1.2

            Oh really. I thought it may have been one of the myriad other possibilities. Or that you simply believe in the divine goodness of all things right – defend to the end! So many people on all sides of the political equation are so vehement in their beliefs that it is like a religion – they are religious extremists in the exact same manner as all those people in foreign lands who get described as extremist. No difference. Shit still smells like shit.

            • Gosman 7.1.1.1.2.1

              No, unlike many people on here, (and you I suspect), I actually acknowledge that ALL policies come with both negatives and positives. Right wing policies are not the panacea for all things under the Sun. If you want to address certain ills you might have to take a more interventionist approach. However I much prefer the Free market to the Interventionist approach on most matters as I realise that Interventionist approach comes with some rather nasty hooks.

              • Pascal's bookie

                On that basis, what do you think of the MOM policy?

                Looks like a dog if you oppose state intervention in markets. Provides all of those nasty hooks, for less benefit.

                And I assume it was an oversight that you phrased your comment to imply that the free market approach doesn’t come with its own rather nasty hooks.

                • Gosman

                  Of course the free market system comes with nasty hooks. Politics is all about deciding which nasty hooks are acceptable.

                  I dislike the MOM because I see no purpose in the State having an active stake, (as a commercial player), in a competitive market and lot’s of potential opportunities for the State to be tempted to distort the market for political purposes.

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    I understand that you think total privatisation would be the best policy. But that is not actually on the table.

                    So the question for people who support total privatisation is “What’s the second best policy option?”

                    Do you think MOM is better than the status quo of state owned enterprises? What’s your reasoning on this?

                    You are making great play of your own self percieved virtue here. That you think things through more profoundly than many here with regard to policies and their alternatives.

                    So I’m asking if you’d like to grant us the benefit of your thinking.

                    Are MOMs better than SOEs? Why, or why not?

                    Not difficult, I should think.

                    .

                    • Gosman

                      I like the idea that introducing an aspect of market ownership into the SOE’s might makethem more responsive to a wider range of opinions than what the Government of the day wants or dictates. I also agree with the position expressed by the head of the Employers and Manmufactures Association ,(I think), who highlighted that listing the shares on the NZ Stock market would likely increase the attractiveness of investing there. We have a problem in NZ where people invest in unlargely unproductive assets like property rather than shares. This increases the cost of capital for NZ businesses. anything which alters this from a market perspective is good in my mind.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Hmmm. Not seeing any analysis of the hooks there. 🙁

                      What do you make of the fact that a bunch of large (by NZ standards) organisations will be listed on the NZX which have an implicit government guarantee?

                      Why do you think that having these former SOEs listed will attract new money to the NZX from property?

                      Do you think that institutional investors (like kiwisaver managers and the like) will adjust their weightings so that they are more invested in NZ energy stocks than previously, or do you think that over the mid to long term it will just be a reshuffling?

                      Why do you think that directors will suddenly start bringing new ideas to the companies given that most directors in NZ SOEs are also private sector players? Is this a faith based thing? Underpants gnome stuff? Or is there actual reasoning behind it? If so, could you share it please?

                      Why is it that if there is, presumably, a bunch of capital floating around in unproductive holding pens, that we need the state to float SOEs to soak it up? Is not the NZX intended as a vehicle for getting that capital to areas that the private sector thinks it would be productive? Why, I am forced to ask, does the private sector not step up with areas for investment?

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      All in all, looks more like desperate justification that the reasoned balancing of pros and cons you promised.

                      It would be sad if it wasn’t so funny.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      *Ahem*

                    • McFlock

                      PB, he’s trying to think of some “hooks”.
                         
                      Trouble is, if your religion states that privatisation has no faults, there are no hooks to find.

                  • Huginn

                    I agree with you that the state should not hold an active stake in a competitive market.
                    Unfortunately, the electricity markets are not competitive and pretending that they are. the way that Max Bradford did, will not make them competitive – ever.

                    Here’s a hint – look at the tools used to model the electricity markets – stochastic modelling is used to look at states of uncertainty i.e. not fully informed and therefore NOT COMPETITIVE.

                    One possible consequence of making utilities operate in the naively ‘competitive’ markets is that they will build in margins to buffer against uncertainty, which feeds through to higher power bills. Another is that they will find ways to game the market to make gains on the spikes.

  8. captain hook 8

    well if you here for the long haul then rail is more efficient than road.

  9. prism 9

    Somebody on radio this morning talked about the number of times Kiwis change power supplier each year and it was in the 100,000s. So the present system does encourage competition at first glance, with some companies offering a lower price and sometimes extra short term incentives. I don’t see more privatisation being advantageous to ordinary NZs but those who have been wealth accumulators or are being paid salaries with many 000’s will be satisfied.

    • Lanthanide 9.1

      “So the present system does encourage competition at first glance, with some companies offering a lower price and sometimes extra short term incentives. ”

      Or we could just get rid of all of this useless competition and reduce prices for everyone by 15-20% permanently. We wouldn’t have ads on TV about how NZers are full of “good energy”, newsboy talking about windmills or cute pukekos running amok through people’s houses. All of that is pointless overhead that doesn’t actually make electricity any cheaper for anyone.

      • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1

        +1

        One day people will wake up to the fact that competition increases costs and thus prices.

        • Lanthanide 9.1.1.1

          Depends on the market. Often, competition reduces costs (through innovation, striving for profit) and thus prices.

          For something like power in NZ however, I don’t believe competition achieves anything.

          • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1.1.1

            Depends on the market. Often, competition reduces costs (through innovation, striving for profit) and thus prices.

            Nope, competition always increases costs due to duplication, advertising etc etc. The only thing that competition can reduce is the dead weight loss of profit and there’s better ways to do that.

            Innovation is increased when people work together and share what they’ve learned.

            For something like power in NZ however, I don’t believe competition achieves anything.

            Infrastructure is the one thing that is an obvious natural monopoly.

  10. Tangled up in blue 10

    Can Molly Melhuish’s research be considered “independent” due to her strong association with DEUN which runs an anti- privatisation of electricity assets campaign?

    • prism 10.1

      Tangled
      Oh really. She has been working with the facts for years. Unlike your interest which is apparently inclined to feelings, prejudices, obfuscating statements, and the squeezing of profit by the iron grip of private interests.

    • Deano 10.2

      the link is to MED data analysed by the parliamentary library. nothing to do with this molly person.

      Do you dispute the data? If so, why?

  11. Slartibartfast 11

    Aren’t we on a bit of a diversion here?
    Sure we have some competition in the retail sector but……
    When we adopted the Californian system of splitting up the wholesale, transmission & retail aspects of the industry and using an auction process to determine wholesale prices (they had their problems if you check the history) then don’t you have THREE lots of management, administration costs and of course profits? My guess is that these would easily account for a 75% rise in the retail price.

    • Gosman 11.1

      So I suspect it the policy of opposition parties to re-centralise and regulate the electricity sector again. Which parties have this as one of their polices?

      • Lanthanide 11.1.1

        Yip, just like how National are joining the government departments back together after they split them up to create efficiencies in the first place…

    • bbfloyd 12.1

      about as useful as tits on a bull….. in line with most of your comments…. you aren’t little durex’s flatmate are you?

      • fender 12.1.1

        Not very likely, Grossmans flatmates all end up taking their own lives, sadly. Any exceptions to this have all volunteered themselves for medical experiments or electric shock therapy.

  12. freedom 13

    for gosman, who wanted some info on wealth gaps . .

    Efficient market hypothesis

  13. BLiP 14

    .

    DFTT !!!!!

  14. lcmortensen 15

    The Government fails statistics – Contact offers a 22% discount for electronic and prompt payment, Genesis offers 10%, so you are comparing apples with oranges to start with. The MED data does not include such discounts so therefore is more accurate, and from my quick browsing, there is only one region where a private company is the cheapest – Trustpower in Waitaki.

  15. Rich 16

    NZ generates electricity from a few dozen power stations. Their costs are pretty fixed – a worker isn’t going to come up with a bright idea to make Huntly burn less coal, or the Waikato stations let less water through for the same power output.

    So a fair price for electricity reflects fuel costs and capital servicing (which is always cheapest if the government is doing the borrowing. We should have a single fair price for power and a plan that runs the generators to minimise carbon emissions.

    Instead we have a pseudo-market that exists just to keep white collar workers (like Powershop) employed and to facilitate price gouging. privatisation just adds to that.

  16. captain hook 17

    Rich, so are you saying that the market is deliberatley made inefficient to facilitate the profits to private individuals?

    • fatty 17.1

      “are you saying that the market is deliberatley made inefficient to facilitate the profits to private individuals”

      Its called capitalism, profits are the number one concern. All other issues, whether they are ethical or moral, are subjugated to ensure the prime objective is achieved. Efficiency generally results in more profit (outsourcing/flexibility/casualisation etc)…but in some cases inefficiency can create more profits. Limiting the supply will increase the price.
      Same goes for electronic goods, their technology is often held back or even taken out of some products to ensure more money will be paid for ‘high quality’ goods.
      More often than not, the invisible hand is down our pants and molesting us without us even being aware of it. There is no happy ending.

    • Draco T Bastard 17.2

      Not deliberately made inefficient – the market just so happens to be inefficient. All it’s good for is transferring wealth to the already wealthy.

    • Rich 17.3

      It’s intrinsically inefficient. Electricity is a monopoly product with fixed input costs, like I said.

      Having a pseudo-market (which is what we have) is an inefficent way to price electricity, but it’s attractive to free market zealots and it transfers money from the ordinary consumer to (mostly) electricity industry managers and (after privatisation) foreign financial institutions. Many of those beneficiaries are in the 1% for whom this country is run, and the others are amongst the ‘useful idiots’ who can be relied on to support the interests of the 1%.

  17. Matthew 18

    English claims that a lot of people have changed to a cheaper power company. This is true. However when the generators are all in private hands, there will be no such option.

    • tc 18.1

      Smoke and mirrors.

      The retailers are just clipping the ticket from power exiting the grid (transpower) through the lines companies (vector etc) after the generators create that power.

      Who owns the retailers, why the generators do, who can take a loss on the retail as they make it on the generation but with some generous cross charging can make it look ‘viable’.

      Hardly competitive or transparent.

  18. MrSmith 19

    Well Hats off to Winston, unlike Labour and the Greens he has put his money were his mouth is and said:
     
    “New Zealand First is committed to buying back the shares at no greater price than paid by the first purchaser”, 

    And until the other parties start doing the same they should be seen for what they are, just pigs with there noses in the public troth,  I suggest we start telling them Winston will be getting our vote unless they start taking the same line. 

  19. Draco T Bastard 20

    NZ Asset Sales Policy Began On Wall Street

    So what’s really behind asset sales?
    All wealth extraction is facilitated by international and national economic policies, coupled with the private banking system, which together deliver benefits to the financial elite by transferring wealth upward within and between nations.

    The state asset sales policy is just one of several reforms under the Washington Consensus, a set of monetary and economic policies designed to allow: the privatization of public resources and utilities, the removal of barriers to foreign investment and ownership, the sale of state assets, trade liberalization, deregulation, the lowering of business taxes, and cuts to public services.

    That really is all the reasoning behind the asset sales – more wealth to the few.

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  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018)
    This is the advice from the very top of the anti-fluoride movement – Paul Connett, director of the Fluoride Action Network (FAN). Don’t worry about reading  up on all the scientific information “You only have ...
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 10
    . . April 4: Day 10 of living in lock-down… I wake up to a fine Saturday morning which normally would be like an early Christmas. But it’s Day 10 of Level 4 Lock Down. What  will my fellow New Zealanders be doing on a day like this – staying ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Redline reaching out to more writers & readers
    Some time during the night we went over the 850,000 views mark. We might have had our millionth view by the end of this year – certainly by early next year. Most of the people involved in Redline spent years and years producing various small left-wing papers and selling them ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Keir Starmer elected
    Comfortably, in the very first round, with an impressive 56% of the votes.I wonder, did members of the Shadow Cabinet start tweeting their resignations during Starmer's victory speech, or is that only a trick the right pull?It is odd how all the talk of how the next leader "needs to ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: Michael Baker and the Big House
    One of the key voices in this extraordinary time in which we live is that of University of Otago epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker. Philip Matthews did an an excellent job this weekend of capturing the way he became the man for this moment in a profile for The Press.But one ...
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand Gives up on Trying to Save Daylight
    New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addressed the nation today about the decline in daylight New Zealand has been experiencing over the previous few months. She said “As many of you will notice, our attempts to stem the dwindling of the daylight over the last few months have been completely ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    3 days ago
  • A bulletin from Greece
    Redline received this article from the KOE a Marxist party in Greece Our friends in the KOE describe here the mounting crisis in Greece and tensions on the Turkish border. As desperate people flee from their homelands which have been ruined after decades of imperialist wars and interventions the people ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • And God spake all these words, saying
    As the first week of Level Four lockdown unfolded, mounting questions grew as to just what was (and was not) allowed under its “rules”. Partly these were driven by some apparently contradictory messages from different authority figures and explanations carried in the media. Partly they reflected a somewhat sketchy legal basis ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 9
    . . April 3: Day 9 of living in lock-down… Another late-start to my work day. Everything is temporarily upended as clients are shuffled around so we can minimise our “bubble” by reducing the number of people we help. One of my colleagues has been removed from his clients; his ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: The benefits of electrification
    In order to meet our 2050 carbon target and do our bit to avoid making the Earth uninhabitable, New Zealand needs to decarbonise our economy, replacing fossil fuels with electricity in the energy, industrial and transport sectors. The good news is that it will mean cheaper power for all of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    5 days ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

    Prospect Magazine alerted me to this particularly apt quote. It is a much more evocative quote than Hemingway’s “gradually then suddenly” which is also doing ...

    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    5 days ago
  • Maybe axing Clark would be unfair. But what about any of this is fair?
    Yesterday was the day the consequences of the lockdown suddenly got very real for many. Firms have been closing and laying people off since the outset of the quarantine but this has mostly been happening out of the public eye. The mass closure of a number of iconic New Zealand ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    5 days ago
  • Might a ‘Coasean’ social contract mitigate overall societal harm from COVID-19?
    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
    Resuming Normal Service: The Republican Party's nominee for in 1920, Warren Harding, promised the American people: “not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration”. If she wishes to remain our prime minister, then Jacinda Ardern will offer New Zealanders the same.HOW EDUCATED AMERICA snickered when the ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    5 days ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    5 days ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    6 days ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    6 days ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    6 days ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 days ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    7 days ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    7 days ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    7 days ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    1 week ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    1 week ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    1 week ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    1 week ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    1 week ago

  • Work to repurpose PGF funds begins
    The Provincial Development Unit is working through applications and projects to see where Provincial Growth Fund money can be repurposed for initiatives deemed more critical to fighting the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “We need to be throwing everything we have at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • A million workers supported by Govt wage subsidy
    The Government’s wage subsidy to protect jobs and keep workers and businesses connected during the lockdown has now supported over a million New Zealanders, with $6.6 billion already paid out. “We’re supporting businesses to pay wages, and stay connected with their workers so that we are all in a better ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
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    2 weeks ago