Fair Pay Agreements: Thank you Helen and thank you Michael

Written By: - Date published: 10:14 am, October 27th, 2022 - 43 comments
Categories: employment, michael wood, Unions, workers' rights - Tags:

Yesterday was a big day for the Progressive movement in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The Fair Pay Agreements Bill made its way through Parliament and is now waiting for Royal Assent before it becomes law.

The motivation for the Law dates back to National’s mother of all budgets as well as the Employment Contracts Act.  That Act was designed to severely attack the Union Movement and drive workers’ wages down.

It worked.  The country has descended into poverty induced chaos ever since.

The Fifth Labour Government improved things somewhat.  Working for Families meant that ordinary families coped better, but because of state support, not better wages and conditions.

There has been a lot of angst thrown at this Government.  Why has it not improved things for ordinary people at a time when its power was as strong as we can ever hope for.

Well four reasons.

Firstly we have been through a one in a 100 years health crisis.  We have come out of it pretty well.  Compare our death rates to the US or the UK and then complain.  Although the local debate does not occur with this context.

Secondly this Government has reversed the mother of all budget benefit cuts and actually went further.

Thirdly we now have fairly full employment and increasing wages.  If it was not for the Ukraine war and internationally induced inflation then things would be improving dramatically.

Fourthly housing stocks are on the improve.

And now there is a fifth reason.  The introduction of fair pay agreements is the most significant change to the Industrial Relations system since the Employment Contracts Act.

There are many heroes but two should be acknowledged.  Helen Kelly who advocated strongly for this change and Michael Wood who did the hard work in getting it through.

The third reading debate was a joy.  Grumpy right wingers promising to repeal the law if given a chance.  Left wingers praising the change and pointing out the potentially significant benefits there are for ordinary workers.

During the debate Michael Wood said this:

This one’s for Helen Kelly. Over the course of this debate, we’ve talked about the people that fair pay agreements will help—those who clean, those who care, those who drive, those who serve—workers who, for 30 years, have been left out in the shadows of our deregulated labour market. And sometimes, when you know the problem, you need someone who will help to light the way, and Helen was that person for so many of us. Helen spoke directly about the problems; Helen spoke directly and issued challenges to those of us who could make a difference. She said to Rebecca Macfie, who wrote her biography, “We don’t need low wages in this country. There’s no excuse for it. People should be able to go to work, work their hours, and have a decent standard of living at the end of the week.” And, as Rebecca Macfie said, reflecting on that, “It was a matter-of-fact comment that belied a monumental ambition to shake up the movement she now lead so that it worked for all workers and to build the case for a law change that would stop workers’ wages being eroded in a competitive race to the bottom.”

Helen Kelly’s challenge was to all of us: it was to our economy, it was to decision makers in this House, and it was indeed to the union movement—to stop looking inwards and just looking after short-term interests, and to look outwards to the needs of the hundreds of thousands of workers who needed a change.

And Grant Robertson gave a barnstormer of a closing speech in the debate.

National’s promise to repeal the law when it regains power is the perfect reason for progressives to campaign heavily for a progressive government next term.  The system once bedded in should be able to withstand right wing attacks.  But next year it will still be vulnerable to right wing attacks.  As will the aspirations of our poorest paid workers.

For the meantime this is a reason for celebration.  Well done Labour Government.

43 comments on “Fair Pay Agreements: Thank you Helen and thank you Michael ”

  1. Personally I marched against the Contracts Act of Bill Birch and National 30 years ago.

    It started the race to the bottom with workers having to work for poorer pay and to not have any say about work conditions.

    Helen Kelly and Michael Wood Thank you for fighting for Fair Pay Agreements. IMO this is huge.

    • Tiger Mountain 2.1

      Me too–marched against ECB.
      FPAs are huge, because they open a door for working class organising. FPAs will need lots of work, nothing is being handed directly to people despite employers already catastrophising, whinging, bleating and threatening.

      WFF always seemed off because it was another taxpayer transfer, rather than working class and middle class people obtaining their own pay rises from employers.
      And it was unfair because those on benefits, discarded by Rogernomics and ground into the dust by MOAB, market rents & punitive WINZ/MSD were never eligible for WFF.

      This is the hook that is needed to keep the Natzos and ACT out. It is traditional Labour type policy, big ups to Mr Wood.

  2. Kat 3

    Next big one to knock off is the reinstatement of a 21st century Ministry of Works. That would send the opposition into a real headspin.

    • Tiger Mountain 3.1


    • Corey Humm 3.2

      Hell yeah. There's definitely a case for it and there could be several models for it. I wouldn't carbon copy the old one but I'd use it as an inspiration.

      There definitely should be a government owned construction and development corporation, perhaps a smaller version of the old ministry of works that gets govt funded housing and project contracts or one that is able to compete with fletchers.

      It could be done and managed well could be very profitable and beneficial to NZs housing and infrastructure crises.

      • Tiger Mountain 3.2.1

        Could provide full time work, or as full time as people want, and return some infrastructure management to the public. Contractors Fulton Hogan always seem to be busiest doing odd stuff when their funding allocation needs to be used up!

      • Kat 3.2.2

        Anything owned or run by the state is anathema to the neolib idealogue, lets face it they want everyhing privatised from schools, hospitals, prisons, military, utilities, etc etc even welfare is privatised. Just look at Nicola Willis and Nationals latest idea of philanthropy funding welfare, just like back in the Victorian era. You can just imagine the tax deductability for the wealthy in a scheme like that.

  3. mike 4

    Congratulations and thanks to Michael Wood and the whole labour party for delivering this blow against catastrophic neo-con nastiness. Chip by chip the hideous edifice neo conservatives have duped the world into admiring is being dismantled. Their avarice, lying and threats are blinking in the headlights as the steam roller rattles forward. The dictatorship of the salesmen is over.

  4. Peter Kelly 5

    It really is simple, anything other than 'a fair days' pay for a fair days' work' is akin to slavery; anyone who disagrees is therefore a supporter of slavery. We, and the National Party especially, should be ashamed that we have relied on exploited immigrant labour to keep wages low. I can only hope the new law will be a start in remedying that – and that Labour gets (at least) another term to entrench the legislation.

  5. Tony Veitch 6


    Easy to see who the 'enemies of the people' are.

    The battle lines are being drawn for next year's election: Natz and Act for the 1% and their 9% enablers, and the rest of us bottom feeders championed by the Greens, Labour and Ti Pati Maori.

    • Incognito 6.1

      “We have worked alongside employers, workers, academics and civil society to strike the right balance in the Bill. I thank everyone who has constructively contributed to the development of the Act, especially the Fair Pay Agreement Working Group, chaired by Rt Hon Jim Bolger, which provided the initial recommendations.


    • Act must be kept from the levers of power. Bottom Feeders Unite!!

    • Thinker 6.3

      The only way they can get rid of this legislation is by more legislation.


      By Rich capitalists for Rich capitalists?

      Time will tell, but I think NACT doesn't realise we've left the greed of the boomer days behind.

      We all want to do well for ourselves but I think the new breed of centre right voters (swinging voters) will, if they haven't experienced the outcomes of Ruthenasia) will have stood next to someone who has. And many will remember their own times in low paid jobs.

      After two terms of Labour this could be Nationals election to win but it needs to rid itself of the horse and buggy thinking and there's no sign of that yet.

    • newsense 6.4

      National hates Fair Pay. You’re essential workers to us.

    • Tricledrown 6.5

      Seymour is so far away from the average NZer he begrudges workers enough money to feed house and heat their families.The last 2 years have seen the wealthy increase their wealth exponentially while the middle classes are now going to food banks while most of the money printed around the world has gone to the very wealthy speculating on property causing more hardship for most of the worlds people.Seymour is advocating for more Tricleup policies.

  6. Kat 7

    “Unions by stealth………”

    How long before we see the 2023 version of 'Dancing Cossacks' in the media……..the influence and power of the corporates and the constant whinging and whining of business and fed-farmers will be unleashed through the media in election year.

    • PsyclingLeft.Always 7.1

      whining of business and fed-farmers

      WELL fed-farmers at that. Theres been quite a few comments on here previously exactly how WELL NZ business and farmers…are actually doing ! Never mind their continuous "organ" grinding. IMO should really be the world smallest violin. : )

      • Kat 7.1.1

        The smashing of the unions in NZ was driven by the corporate, business, farming and transport sectors that were in turn driven by the neolib idealogue politicians, financiers and bankers.

        How dare some grubby faced coal miner, seaman, railwayman or engineer hold out for better pay………

  7. PsyclingLeft.Always 9

    If its possible…that Helen Kelly is smiling somewhere…..it will be so.

    She was a Brave, Stand-Up Leader..to me, and many Workers

    And also big Respect for Michael Wood. He another Labour Star. Keep on this track Labour. We need you to STOP nact..from ever getting their poisonous claws on NZ again !

  8. adam 10

    I love paraphrasing Grant Robertson.

    "By design, the Tory's want to hurt working people."

    Is their design ideological?

    At this point the nat's look like a punch drunk Boxer

  9. Was telling him indoors the Bill had passed its 3rd reading.

    "Bloody marvellous!!" he said, 'Hope people use the legislation to agree their rights"

  10. Mat Simpson 12

    " Why has it not improved things for ordinary people at a time when its power was as strong as we can ever hope for !

    Oh Mickey you are on fire you actually really believe this stuff and you suffer from delusion.








    Helen Kelly’s challenge was to all of us: it was to our economy

    No its not our economy and hasn't been for 35 years and there is so much that could of been achieved to rectify that with a historic MMP majority but no change to the power of the 1 % and Lino and its enablers.

    Full credit to Michael for this move but where is the safeguards to protect so many more in this plutocracy ?

    Left wingers praising the change and pointing out the potentially significant benefits there are for ordinary workers.

    What left wingers ? those that are ” left ” are no longer have any influence.

    How about this as an idea no socialism, just basic regulated capitalism!

    They just don't have the balls to be a real Labour government.

    • adam 12.1

      Read kiwi blog and the other far right web sites that call themselves the right.

      To them what labour have done is full blown communism.

      So if you don't mind I'll take this small win. One which makes the right this rabid has got to be better for workers.

      Your right it's a small gain – but with the ideological rigidity of those who infest the civil service we could hardly get anything more.

      The above is my opinion and sorry incognito not going to link to the david farrar loony far right dirty politics machine.

      • Incognito 12.1.1


      • Mat Simpson 12.1.2

        " Read kiwi blog and the other far right web sites that call themselves the right "

        No I don't care what they spew out as nonsensical garbage.

        I deal with the real world and the people who are economic refugees of this neo liberal repressive system that sells itself as protectors of freedom and democracy.

        This Labour party is a long way away from what it was founded to do before it drank from the corporate cool aid.

        Yes it is a small win Adam by a Labour government with a majority not seen since 1990 under FPP.

        " ideological rigidity of those who infest the civil service we could hardly get anything more "

        Know thy enemy while in opposition then exert authority….

        The professional Managerial Class of Wellington Bureaucrats and the vested interests that control our economy.

      • Shanreagh 12.1.3

        but with the ideological rigidity of those who infest the civil service we could hardly get anything more.

        When these 'reforms' were put through in the late 80s and 90s the Public Service departments showing ideological rigidity were mainly Treasury and for the State Sector SSC. They were captured very early on in the process with Graham Scott/Chicago school and for the State Sector 'Stan the man' or Stan Roger. These two depts were had to vet anything that went up to Cabinet/cabinet Cttees. We could not get anywhere. All sorts of ideas were used to get around this, such as Ministers taking material direct to Cabinet where their deps had not had a fair go. Ministers pushing material to Cabinet that should have been limited to the Cttees so that they could try to get allies on side against the 'puritans on the cabinet Committees. The two Ministers I worked for Nat/Lab worked hard against some of the worst neo-lib excesses as they applied to their depts.

        Other departmental heads were appalled, I know of many who fought tooth and nail over the waste of talented people thrown aside in the endless restructurings in pursuit of Chicago school ideology.

        Then came the quasi political appointments to the CEs of departments when we had endless numbers of appointments, many from overseas, who had a dearth of knowledge about NZ, its people, the departments they were working for……

        Neo lib is a wily and poisonous creed. I think (perhaps hope) that now CE appointments are slowly turning back to talented NZers who have experience in the NZ Public Sector.

        Of course some (home grown and imported) don't know the conventions about dealing with politicians in their role as Ministers etc, The most notable example being the former head of MSD who broke client confidentiality and advised, his NP minister, on the spurious grounds of 'no surprises', personal details of Winston Peters.

  11. DS 13

    A truly wonderful development… though somewhat soured by the sense that Wood had to fight his own Government every step of the way on this. Why else would it have taken them so long?

    • Darien Fenton 13.1

      DS because Winston refused to vote for it and Labour didn't have the numbers until 2020. Then we had a little pandemic.

  12. The passing of the FPA is a great day. Like many of the so-called reforms back in the late 80s and 90s many people with commonsense could have told the Govts that these reforms cost, in human-terms, more than they gave back. And Grant Robertson's speech…..brilliant.

    Now, ever onwards, looking at you Megan Woods, what can we do about energy costs? Can we do something to unroll the Bradford 'reforms'.

    Always good to see, not, headlines like this. These changes have now come to pass.


    'Woods’ expectation has been that power companies would use the extra revenues to apply an equivalent reduction in charges paid by households that use more power, meaning consumers overall would be no better or worse off on average as a result of the change despite there being winners and losers.

    However, the Government did not seek a guarantee from power companies that tariff changes would cancel out on aggregate.'

    The removal would be 'broadly neutral' …such classic weasel words. They are either neutral or they are not.

  13. Anker 15

    Yes. Thank you Labour and Helen

  14. SPC 16

    The 4th Labour government was probably a bit unnerved by the 2000 winter of discontent – the un-elected neo-liberal regimes objection to moderate reform of the ECA.

  15. newsense 17

    Fair pay doesn’t create a fair life style ifall the increases go to landlords, there are no back yards and too much of a day is spent communing. If there is no access to safe local parks instead of back gardens and economical camp grounds to holiday at our beaches. There are other promises of our parents and grandparents bequeathment that go unaddressed.

    Pay alone doesn’t provide the social compact that the members of this parliament enjoyed. Security and recreation for a day’s work.

    Good job. More to do.

    • SPC 17.1

      Yes and another is to limit the requirement to be available to work shifts to get jobs.

      In former times people would volunteer to work evenings or weekends on top of their main job (if saving to own homes). Variable shift jobs were just a means to get rid of overtime rates – and they had a pernicious effect on community engagement – as to sport etc.

      PS A rent freeze is an obvious move during high inflation.

      • newsense 17.1.1

        There’re so many ways that little cuts here and there add up.

        For example, you could try to out Christian the Nats on working on the Christian holidays and providing penalty rates on Sundays. Because the point of these days is a fixed point where you don’t belong to your job or the commercial cycle. You belong to your family, your home and yourself! They have a lot of members whose professed Christianity does nothing for Kiwis and kiwi families, but a lot for Crefflo Dollar junior. Abortion bans without mental health support. Rules and punishments without improving people’s lives. Business masquerading as holiness.

        8 hours work, 8 hours rest, 8 hours recreation!

      • newsense 17.1.2

        It’s not only the cost of rent, it is the design of the properties, cities and infrastructure.

        How far to the supermarket, how far to the bus stop and train station, can you push a trolley or stroller along the footpaths, are other shopping and cultural amenities easily accessible, do young and old people feel safe on their own, how much additional time is taken in friction to accomplish survival tasks? A 15 minute walk to an amenity is not really good enough for many.

        Let alone is it mouldy, is there enough sun etc etc…

        • SPC

          The Labour-National agreement on urban intensification to 3 storey buildings the worst recent example of a lowering of standards. Doing to urban planning what the building reforms did, unto the consequence leaky homes.

          Instead of building along transport spines, it could occur anywhere – regardless of local facilities etc.

    • weka 17.2

      great comment newsense.

    • newsense 17.3

      *if all


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    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    4 days ago
  • Transport Agencies don’t want Harbour Tunnels
    It seems even our transport agencies don’t want Labour’s harbour crossing plans. In August the previous government and Waka Kotahi announced their absurd preferred option the new harbour crossing that at the time was estimated to cost $35-45 billion. It included both road tunnels and a wiggly light rail tunnel ...
    4 days ago
  • Webworm Presents: Jurassic Park on 35mm
    Hi,Paying Webworm members such as yourself keep this thing running, so as 2023 draws to close, I wanted to do two things to say a giant, loud “THANKS”. Firstly — I’m giving away 10 Mister Organ blu-rays in New Zealand, and another 10 in America. More details down below.Secondly — ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    4 days ago
  • The Prime Minister's Dream.
    Yesterday saw the State Opening of Parliament, the Speech from the Throne, and then Prime Minister Christopher Luxon’s dream for Aotearoa in his first address. But first the pomp and ceremony, the arrival of the Governor General.Dame Cindy Kiro arrived on the forecourt outside of parliament to a Māori welcome. ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • National’s new MP; the proud part-Maori boy raised in a state house
    Probably not since 1975 have we seen a government take office up against such a wall of protest and complaint. That was highlighted yesterday, the day that the new Parliament was sworn in, with news that King Tuheitia has called a national hui for late January to develop a ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    4 days ago
  • Climate Adam: Battlefield Earth – How War Fuels Climate Catastrophe
    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). War, conflict and climate change are tearing apart lives across the world. But these aren't separate harms - they're intricately connected. ...
    5 days ago
  • They do not speak for us, and they do not speak for the future
    These dire woeful and intolerant people have been so determinedly going about their small and petulant business, it’s hard to keep up. At the end of the new government’s first woeful week, Audrey Young took the time to count off its various acts of denigration of Te Ao Māori:Review the ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Another attack on te reo
    The new white supremacist government made attacking te reo a key part of its platform, promising to rename government agencies and force them to "communicate primarily in English" (which they already do). But today they've gone further, by trying to cut the pay of public servants who speak te reo: ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • For the record, the Beehive buzz can now be regarded as “official”
    Buzz from the Beehive The biggest buzz we bring you from the Beehive today is that the government’s official website is up and going after being out of action for more than a week. The latest press statement came  from  Education Minister  Eric Stanford, who seized on the 2022 PISA ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Failed again
    There was another ETS auction this morning. and like all the other ones this year, it failed to clear - meaning that 23 million tons of carbon (15 million ordinary units plus 8 million in the cost containment reserve) went up in smoke. Or rather, they didn't. Being unsold at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell On The Government’s Assault On Maori
    This isn’t news, but the National-led coalition is mounting a sustained assault on Treaty rights and obligations. Even so, Christopher Luxon has described yesterday’s nationwide protests by Maori as “pretty unfair.” Poor thing. In the NZ Herald, Audrey Young has compiled a useful list of the many, many ways that ...
    5 days ago
  • Rising costs hit farmers hard, but  there’s more  positive news  for  them this  week 
    New Zealand’s dairy industry, the mainstay of the country’s export trade, has  been under  pressure  from rising  costs. Down on the  farm, this  has  been  hitting  hard. But there  was more positive news this week,  first   from the latest Fonterra GDT auction where  prices  rose,  and  then from  a  report ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    5 days ago
  • ROB MacCULLOCH:  Newshub and NZ Herald report misleading garbage about ACT’s van Veldon not follo...
    Rob MacCulloch writes –  In their rush to discredit the new government (which our MainStream Media regard as illegitimate and having no right to enact the democratic will of voters) the NZ Herald and Newshub are arguing ACT’s Deputy Leader Brooke van Veldon is not following Treasury advice ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • Top 10 for Wednesday, December 6
    Even many young people who smoke support smokefree policies, fitting in with previous research showing the large majority of people who smoke regret starting and most want to quit. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s my pick of the top 10 news and analysis links elsewhere on the morning of Wednesday, December ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Eleven years of work.
    Well it didn’t take six months, but the leaks have begun. Yes the good ship Coalition has inadvertently released a confidential cabinet paper into the public domain, discussing their axing of Fair Pay Agreements (FPAs).Oops.Just when you were admiring how smoothly things were going for the new government, they’ve had ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Why we're missing out on sharply lower inflation
    A wave of new and higher fees, rates and charges will ripple out over the economy in the next 18 months as mayors, councillors, heads of department and price-setters for utilities such as gas, electricity, water and parking ramp up charges. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Just when most ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • How Did We Get Here?
    Hi,Kiwis — keep the evening of December 22nd free. I have a meetup planned, and will send out an invite over the next day or so. This sounds sort of crazy to write, but today will be Tony Stamp’s final Totally Normal column of 2023. Somehow we’ve made it to ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • At a glance – Has the greenhouse effect been falsified?
    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 ...
    6 days ago
  • New Zealaders  have  high expectations of  new  government:  now let’s see if it can deliver?
    The electorate has high expectations of the  new  government.  The question is: can  it  deliver?    Some  might  say  the  signs are not  promising. Protestors   are  already marching in the streets. The  new  Prime Minister has had  little experience of managing  very diverse politicians  in coalition. The economy he  ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    6 days ago
  • You won't believe some of the numbers you have to pull when you're a Finance Minister
    Nicola of Marsden:Yo, normies! We will fix your cost of living worries by giving you a tax cut of 150 dollars. 150! Cash money! Vote National.Various people who can read and count:Actually that's 150 over a fortnight. Not a week, which is how you usually express these things.And actually, it looks ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Pushback
    When this government came to power, it did so on an explicitly white supremacist platform. Undermining the Waitangi Tribunal, removing Māori representation in local government, over-riding the courts which had tried to make their foreshore and seabed legislation work, eradicating te reo from public life, and ultimately trying to repudiate ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Defence ministerial meeting meant Collins missed the Maori Party’s mischief-making capers in Parli...
    Buzz from the Beehive Maybe this is not the best time for our Minister of Defence to have gone overseas. Not when the Maori Party is inviting (or should that be inciting?) its followers to join a revolution in a post which promoted its protest plans with a picture of ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • Threats of war have been followed by an invitation to join the revolution – now let’s see how th...
     A Maori Party post on Instagram invited party followers to ….  Tangata Whenua, Tangata Tiriti, Join the REVOLUTION! & make a stand!  Nationwide Action Day, All details in tiles swipe to see locations.  • This is our 1st hit out and tomorrow Tuesday the 5th is the opening ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • Top 10 for Tuesday, December 4
    The RBNZ governor is citing high net migration and profit-led inflation as factors in the bank’s hawkish stance. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s my pick of the top 10 news and analysis links elsewhere on the morning of Tuesday, December 5, including:Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr says high net migration and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Nicola Willis' 'show me the money' moment
    Willis has accused labour of “economic vandalism’, while Robertson described her comments as a “desperate diversion from somebody who can't make their tax package add up”. There will now be an intense focus on December 20 to see whether her hyperbole is backed up by true surprises. Photo montage: Lynn ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • CRL costs money but also provides huge benefits
    The City Rail Link has been in the headlines a bit recently so I thought I’d look at some of them. First up, yesterday the NZ Herald ran this piece about the ongoing costs of the CRL. Auckland ratepayers will be saddled with an estimated bill of $220 million each ...
    6 days ago
  • And I don't want the world to see us.
    Is this the most shambolic government in the history of New Zealand? Given that parliament hasn’t even opened they’ve managed quite a list of achievements to date.The Smokefree debacle trading lives for tax cuts, the Trumpian claims of bribery in the Media, an International award for indifference, and today the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Cooking the books
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis late yesterday stopped only slightly short of accusing her predecessor Grant Robertson of cooking the books. She complained that the Half Yearly Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU), due to be made public on December 20, would show “fiscal cliffs” that would amount to “billions of ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • Most people don’t realize how much progress we’ve made on climate change
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections The year was 2015. ‘Uptown Funk’ with Bruno Mars was at the top of the music charts. Jurassic World was the most popular new movie in theaters. And decades of futility in international climate negotiations was about to come to an end in ...
    7 days ago
  • Of Parliamentary Oaths and Clive Boonham
    As a heads-up, I am not one of those people who stay awake at night thinking about weird Culture War nonsense. At least so far as the current Maori/Constitutional arrangements go. In fact, I actually consider it the least important issue facing the day to day lives of New ...
    7 days ago
  • Bearing True Allegiance?
    Strong Words: “We do not consent, we do not surrender, we do not cede, we do not submit; we, the indigenous, are rising. We do not buy into the colonial fictions this House is built upon. Te Pāti Māori pledges allegiance to our mokopuna, our whenua, and Te Tiriti o ...
    7 days ago
  • You cannot be serious
    Some days it feels like the only thing to say is: Seriously? No, really. Seriously?OneSomeone has used their health department access to share data about vaccinations and patients, and inform the world that New Zealanders have been dying in their hundreds of thousands from the evil vaccine. This of course is pure ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • A promise kept: govt pulls the plug on Lake Onslow scheme – but this saving of $16bn is denounced...
    Buzz from the Beehive After $21.8 million was spent on investigations, the plug has been pulled on the Lake Onslow pumped-hydro electricity scheme, The scheme –  that technically could have solved New Zealand’s looming energy shortage, according to its champions – was a key part of the defeated Labour government’s ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    1 week ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER: The Maori Party and Oath of Allegiance
    If those elected to the Māori Seats refuse to take them, then what possible reason could the country have for retaining them?   Chris Trotter writes – Christmas is fast approaching, which, as it does every year, means gearing up for an abstruse general knowledge question. “Who was ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    1 week ago
  • BRIAN EASTON:  Forward to 2017
    The coalition party agreements are mainly about returning to 2017 when National lost power. They show commonalities but also some serious divergencies. Brian Easton writes The two coalition agreements – one National and ACT, the other National and New Zealand First – are more than policy documents. ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Fossils
    When the new government promised to allow new offshore oil and gas exploration, they were warned that there would be international criticism and reputational damage. Naturally, they arrogantly denied any possibility that that would happen. And then they finally turned up at COP, to criticism from Palau, and a "fossil ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • GEOFFREY MILLER:  NZ’s foreign policy resets on AUKUS, Gaza and Ukraine
    Geoffrey Miller writes – New Zealand’s international relations are under new management. And Winston Peters, the new foreign minister, is already setting a change agenda. As expected, this includes a more pro-US positioning when it comes to the Pacific – where Peters will be picking up where he ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the government’s smokefree laws debacle
    The most charitable explanation for National’s behaviour over the smokefree legislation is that they have dutifully fulfilled the wishes of the Big Tobacco lobby and then cast around – incompetently, as it turns out – for excuses that might sell this health policy U-turn to the public. The less charitable ...
    1 week ago
  • Top 10 links at 10 am for Monday, December 4
    As Deb Te Kawa writes in an op-ed, the new Government seems to have immediately bought itself fights with just about everyone. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Here’s my pick of the top 10 news and analysis links elsewhere as of 10 am on Monday December 4, including:Palau’s President ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Be Honest.
    Let’s begin today by thinking about job interviews.During my career in Software Development I must have interviewed hundreds of people, hired at least a hundred, but few stick in the memory.I remember one guy who was so laid back he was practically horizontal, leaning back in his chair until his ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: New Zealand’s foreign policy resets on AUKUS, Gaza and Ukraine
    New Zealand’s international relations are under new management. And Winston Peters, the new foreign minister, is already setting a change agenda. As expected, this includes a more pro-US positioning when it comes to the Pacific – where Peters will be picking up where he left off. Peters sought to align ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    1 week ago
  • Auckland rail tunnel the world’s most expensive
    Auckland’s city rail link is the most expensive rail project in the world per km, and the CRL boss has described the cost of infrastructure construction in Aotearoa as a crisis. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The 3.5 km City Rail Link (CRL) tunnel under Auckland’s CBD has cost ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago

  • COP28 National Statement for New Zealand
    Tēnā koutou katoa Mr President, Excellencies, Delegates. An island nation at the bottom of the Pacific, New Zealand is unique.          Our geography, our mountains, lakes, winds and rainfall helps set us up for the future, allowing for nearly 90 per cent of our electricity to come from renewable sources. I’m ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ministers visit Hawke’s Bay to grasp recovery needs
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon joined Cyclone Recovery Minister Mark Mitchell and Transport and Local Government Minister Simeon Brown, to meet leaders of cyclone and flood-affected regions in the Hawke’s Bay. The visit reinforced the coalition Government’s commitment to support the region and better understand its ongoing requirements, Mr Mitchell says.  ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand condemns malicious cyber activity
    New Zealand has joined the UK and other partners in condemning malicious cyber activity conducted by the Russian Government, Minister Responsible for the Government Communications Security Bureau Judith Collins says. The statement follows the UK’s attribution today of malicious cyber activity impacting its domestic democratic institutions and processes, as well ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Disestablishment of Te Pūkenga begins
    The Government has begun the process of disestablishing Te Pūkenga as part of its 100-day plan, Minister for Tertiary Education and Skills Penny Simmonds says.  “I have started putting that plan into action and have met with the chair and chief Executive of Te Pūkenga to advise them of my ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change Minister to attend COP28 in Dubai
    Climate Change Minister Simon Watts will be leaving for Dubai today to attend COP28, the 28th annual UN climate summit, this week. Simon Watts says he will push for accelerated action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement, deliver New Zealand’s national statement and connect with partner countries, private sector leaders ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand to host 2024 Pacific defence meeting
    Defence Minister Judith Collins yesterday announced New Zealand will host next year’s South Pacific Defence Ministers’ Meeting (SPDMM). “Having just returned from this year’s meeting in Nouméa, I witnessed first-hand the value of meeting with my Pacific counterparts to discuss regional security and defence matters. I welcome the opportunity to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Study shows need to remove distractions in class
    The Government is committed to lifting school achievement in the basics and that starts with removing distractions so young people can focus on their learning, Education Minister Erica Stanford says.   The 2022 PISA results released this week found that Kiwi kids ranked 5th in the world for being distracted ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister sets expectations of Commissioner
    Today I met with Police Commissioner Andrew Coster to set out my expectations, which he has agreed to, says Police Minister Mark Mitchell. Under section 16(1) of the Policing Act 2008, the Minister can expect the Police Commissioner to deliver on the Government’s direction and priorities, as now outlined in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand needs a strong and stable ETS
    New Zealand needs a strong and stable Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) that is well placed for the future, after emission units failed to sell for the fourth and final auction of the year, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says.  At today’s auction, 15 million New Zealand units (NZUs) – each ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • PISA results show urgent need to teach the basics
    With 2022 PISA results showing a decline in achievement, Education Minister Erica Stanford is confident that the Coalition Government’s 100-day plan for education will improve outcomes for Kiwi kids.  The 2022 PISA results show a significant decline in the performance of 15-year-old students in maths compared to 2018 and confirms ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Collins leaves for Pacific defence meeting
    Defence Minister Judith Collins today departed for New Caledonia to attend the 8th annual South Pacific Defence Ministers’ meeting (SPDMM). “This meeting is an excellent opportunity to meet face-to-face with my Pacific counterparts to discuss regional security matters and to demonstrate our ongoing commitment to the Pacific,” Judith Collins says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Working for Families gets cost of living boost
    Putting more money in the pockets of hard-working families is a priority of this Coalition Government, starting with an increase to Working for Families, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon says. “We are starting our 100-day plan with a laser focus on bringing down the cost of living, because that is what ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Post-Cabinet press conference
    Most weeks, following Cabinet, the Prime Minister holds a press conference for members of the Parliamentary Press Gallery. This page contains the transcripts from those press conferences, which are supplied by Hansard to the Office of the Prime Minister. It is important to note that the transcripts have not been edited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Lake Onslow pumped hydro scheme scrapped
    The Government has axed the $16 billion Lake Onslow pumped hydro scheme championed by the previous government, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says. “This hugely wasteful project was pouring money down the drain at a time when we need to be reining in spending and focussing on rebuilding the economy and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ welcomes further pause in fighting in Gaza
    New Zealand welcomes the further one-day extension of the pause in fighting, which will allow the delivery of more urgently-needed humanitarian aid into Gaza and the release of more hostages, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said. “The human cost of the conflict is horrific, and New Zealand wants to see the violence ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Condolences on passing of Henry Kissinger
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today expressed on behalf of the New Zealand Government his condolences to the family of former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who has passed away at the age of 100 at his home in Connecticut. “While opinions on his legacy are varied, Secretary Kissinger was ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Backing our kids to learn the basics
    Every child deserves a world-leading education, and the Coalition Government is making that a priority as part of its 100-day plan. Education Minister Erica Stanford says that will start with banning cellphone use at school and ensuring all primary students spend one hour on reading, writing, and maths each day. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • US Business Summit Speech – Regional stability through trade
    I would like to begin by echoing the Prime Minister’s thanks to the organisers of this Summit, Fran O’Sullivan and the Auckland Business Chamber.  I want to also acknowledge the many leading exporters, sector representatives, diplomats, and other leaders we have joining us in the room. In particular, I would like ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Keynote Address to the United States Business Summit, Auckland
    Good morning. Thank you, Rosemary, for your warm introduction, and to Fran and Simon for this opportunity to make some brief comments about New Zealand’s relationship with the United States.  This is also a chance to acknowledge my colleague, Minister for Trade Todd McClay, Ambassador Tom Udall, Secretary of Foreign ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • India New Zealand Business Council Speech, India as a Strategic Priority
    Good morning, tēnā koutou and namaskar. Many thanks, Michael, for your warm welcome. I would like to acknowledge the work of the India New Zealand Business Council in facilitating today’s event and for the Council’s broader work in supporting a coordinated approach for lifting New Zealand-India relations. I want to also ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Coalition Government unveils 100-day plan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has laid out the Coalition Government’s plan for its first 100 days from today. “The last few years have been incredibly tough for so many New Zealanders. People have put their trust in National, ACT and NZ First to steer them towards a better, more prosperous ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand welcomes European Parliament vote on the NZ-EU Free Trade Agreement
    A significant milestone in ratifying the NZ-EU Free Trade Agreement (FTA) was reached last night, with 524 of the 705 member European Parliament voting in favour to approve the agreement. “I’m delighted to hear of the successful vote to approve the NZ-EU FTA in the European Parliament overnight. This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago

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