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John, Ken and Mark might have had much better weeks

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 pm, May 7th, 2016 - 14 comments
Categories: brand key, john key, tax - Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

It’s been a shocker week for John Key and his mates

John and Mark

Mark and John

Friend and “lawyer”, Ken Whitney, who isn’t actually a lawyer, was told by Key he was sloppy as the prime minister slithered deeper into the mire over the Panama Papers scandal and the role each has played in maintaining New Zealand’s status as a tax haven.

Key was the only political leader singled out for special attention by Panama Papers whistleblower “John Doe” for his ability to remain “curiously quiet about his country’s role in enabling the financial fraud Mecca that is the Cook Islands”.

But Key and Whitney’s week was positively sunny compared with that experienced by Key cheer leader, former Olympian and markets golden boy, Mark Weldon, who engaged in a trifecta of disasters.

As things got tougher at MediaWorks in the wake of the resignation of star news anchor, Hilary Barry, (whose name Weldon couldn’t get right in the staff memo), he bravely led by example and quit as chief executive, whimpering that the personal cost of continuing was too high. Didums Mark.

It was difficult to escape the stampede of former staffers and associates rushing to dis their former boss – Jeff Hampton, David Farrier, Sarah Hall, Paula Penfold and Mark Jennings all voiced their vitriol and enthused about his departure.

“I did a little yelp of joy…like an excited puppy,” wrote Farrier, the former Newsworthy presenter at TV3, on hearing of Weldon’s resignation.

Check out the best tweets on how unloved Weldon was/is.

Oh, he had one, supporter – gossiper, Rachel Glucina, editor of Scout, the disastrous foray devoted to celeb gossip set up by Weldon.

“The most visionary & inspiring leader I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with has resigned,” tweeted Glucina.

Apart from destroying the well established 3 News brand, Weldon last act was to axe the Four channel and replaced it with Bravo, an all-reality channel. “This was his vision,” lamented Raybon Kan in a scathing critique.

Hayden Donnell and Duncan Greive reported MediaWorks staff had been planning mass insurrection prior to Weldon’s surprise resignation. In a prescient blog in The Spinoff, they noted Weldon’s “brief, tumultuous tenure has already seen the loss of experienced staff, the end of Campbell Live and 3D, concerns over declining  TV ratings and ad revenue, along with a steady stream of embarrassing news stories about the organisation.”

Another embarrassment for Weldon this week, that is going to get worse next week when he is in dock as a witness, was the start of a nine-week court battle between stock exchange operator, NZX, and a grain trading business it was buying, when Weldon was CEO of NZX. Each is suing the other for many millions of dollars.

Weldon had forecast the Ralec’s grain-trading platform would become an “agric-Bloomberg”worth A$750 million to $A1 billion (a value that surprisingly never eventuated).

Ralec’s lawyer said in court this week that NZX never gave it the resources to deliver, while NZX alleges Ralec misrepresented its prospects and relationships with the industry.

According to the NZ Herald report, Ralec lawyer Tim North noted there was underperformance in all of NZX’s targeted acquisitions at that point (2010) and Weldon “was under significant pressure from his own board about his own performance”.

“Weldon had been under real concern about the question of NZX’s liquidity,” North said.

The third leg to Weldon’s star-waning trifecta this week, was the announcement he is stepping down as chairman of NZAX-listed internet labour-management company, Geo-Op Limited. Geo-Op listed with great promise in 2013 when the $1 shares first traded at $2.20. They peaked at $4.49 in November of that month, valuing the start-up at over $150 million, but all has since pretty much turned to custard.

In what may be a Weldon pattern, there was a parting of the ways with the female star, Leanne Graham, the former Xero exec who set up the company. To be fair, the shares had already lost 90% of their value from their peak ahead of her departure, but from that point, they have lost another 57% to be down at 28 cents.

Weldon’s step down as chairman, though he remains a director, is part of Geo-Op’s shotgun marriage to Australian mobile sales app developer InterfaceIT. In an usual move for a publically-listed company, reporters were barred from this week’s shareholder meeting to approve the deal, probably because the thin skinned Weldon, couldn’t face them for fear of more personal pain.

On the Whitney front, things got murkier and murkier as Key, Whitney and Revenue Minister Todd McClay contradicted each others’ stories about how Whitney’s specialist foreign trust and tax avoidance company, Antipodes Trust Group, managed to stymie Inland Revenue from tightening up disclosure rules as planned.

Even conservative Granny Herald in its editorial admonished Key for allowing his “lawyer” to approach him over the issue and then advising him to talk to the revenue minister.

He should not have said anything of that kind. He should have given this message to Ken Whitney: ‘You are my lawyer. I’d rather you didn’t approach anyone in the Government about issues of public policy. Surely somebody else in the industry can do it.’,” NZ Herald wrote.

And that’s accepting Key’s version of events that he did not wig McClay’s ear, which given Key’s past economy with the truth over Dirty Politics etc etc is a big if.

The Prime Minister needs to keep his personal wealth and investments well away from his public responsibilities. Mr Whitney did his client no favours by bringing this issue to him, even if none of Mr Key’s wealth would be in a foreign trust administered here,” went on NZ Herald.

Interestingly, Key and McClay were at odds over whether Key had informed the Revenue Minister that his personal lawyer would be lobbying him over IRD’s plan.

McClay did not recall Key telling him who Whitney was, but Key, who in the past has had a lot of trouble recalling details, on this occasion was certain he told McClay he would hear from “my lawyer”.

In his bid to extricate himself from a series of conflicting statements, Key then denied Whitney’s claim that the PM had advised him there were no plans to change the status of the foreign trust regime. He said it was Whitney’s “sloppy wording”.

The Herald’s Matt Nippett this week also dug up an interesting story about Whitney that called into question Key’s claim that Whitney was a “highly ethical” lawyer.

The story reported Whitney being castigated by High Court judge, Ed Wylie, for creating a sham trust for a bankrupt property developer then failing to disclose it to authorities probing his client’s insolvency.

Under cross-examination, Whitney disclosed his “high ethics” when asked if he had concerns around setting up structures to allow a bankrupt to continue in business; he told the court: “No, not particularly. It’s a common thing for people to do. It may not be morally as white as it could be but it’s normal practice.”

Well it hasn’t been a great week for ethics, the truth or mateship.

Simon Louisson formerly worked for The Wall Street Journal, NZPA, Reuters, The Jerusalem Post and was most recently a political and media adviser to the Green Party

 

14 comments on “John, Ken and Mark might have had much better weeks”

  1. seeker 1

    Highly dangerous to consider john key as a ‘mate’ unless you are Bronagh.

    Weldone totally unsuitable but put in place for key’s own ends; Whitney thrown under bus even poor Hubbard thought things would be fine for his company probs when key got back from wherever he was (I remember reading this at the time,can’t find link tho’) However key isn’t such a great’mate’ when you are in trouble…….. he distances himself as soon as he can.
    Very little respect from key either even if you are a brave soldier and have died for your country. As for devastating earthquakes or diabolical mine disasters…….disregard and dismiss after a few platitudes is key’s m.o.

    The man is a moral hazard, an ethical nightmare.

    Perhaps I shouldn’t say this, but he is becoming rather like a zit that needs urgent compression before we all get squeezed to death with him. Ugh!

    With mates and pms like key, who needs enemies?

    • Adrian 1.1

      Key was in London as I recall and Hubbards main complaint was that Key wouldn’t,t return his calls.
      The Quote was along the lines of “This wouldn’t,t have happened ( the shutdown of SCF ) if I could have talked to him”.
      Which brings into question a lot of other questions such as Donations and the inclusion of SCF in the guarantee scheme against all sorts of official advice.
      The quote was a few days after the shutdown

  2. Human greed , subterfuge in politics, ulterior motives , betrayal and criminals denying their long time crony’s to save their own skins – this has never changed through the mellennia.

    I like a little artistic license to illustrate a few ideas… nothing new there as well… and that’s also been done to hold the powerful to account through the mellenia .

  3. Draco T Bastard 3

    Under cross-examination, Whitney disclosed his “high ethics” when asked if he had concerns around setting up structures to allow a bankrupt to continue in business; he told the court: “No, not particularly. It’s a common thing for people to do. It may not be morally as white as it could be but it’s normal practice.”

    And that’s business in a nutshell. As long as it makes money they don’t give a god damn if it’s ethical or not.

  4. Incognito 4

    Well it hasn’t been a great week for ethics, the truth or mateship.

    This is correct if, and only if, you’re referring to John, Ken, and Mark. Ordinary New Zealanders still live by these old-fashioned values, by and large, and are in no hurry to give these up for 30 pieces of silver or other hollow rewards such as ‘fame’ or ‘popularity’, none of which are conducive to raising a family, building supportive communities, or a cohesive society.

  5. Keith 5

    The fact that Weldon had no experience at all in the media industry always made his appointment to the CEO postion tenuous. But I’ve seen that sort of thing time and again, a CEO who is appointed for unfathomable reasons, who then stamps his authority on an organisation he has no idea about often made all the worse if that person suffers poor man management skills and a big ego.

    Sadly it almost always ends the same way, in tears with staff alienated, then disengaged, then those who remain (after the inevitable exodus of expertise and talented staff created by such appointments) to throw as many spanners into the works as the can to ensure the prick at the top fails, ultimately meaning at best the company never gets close to its full potential or at worst struggles to survive.

    But hey, he got rid of John Campbell and for that National are eternally greatful.

    • RedLogix 5.1

      The common factor in all of these fiasco’s is bringing in the ‘talented outsider’ in a ‘hail mary’ attempt to fix other issues that have become internally stalemated. While it may break through the issue at hand; the ongoing damage caused by the outsiders ignorance and now overweening arrogance is always terminal.

      I once saw this play out at a large global corporate in the 90’s. In the end the board was smart enough to see what was coming down the road and paid the useless pos $3m to go away. It was probably the best value $3m they ever spent, but still it’s nice work if you can get it.

      • tc 5.1.1

        Issue here is the board is full of club members and banksta types, allowing Weldon to take the reigns was politics over shareholder value.

        Yet another board that’s failed in its fiduciary duties with a nice set of spin that blames others.

      • Richard Christie 5.1.2

        I’m curious to know what Weldon’s severance deal was.
        I suspect the final meeting with Oaktree was in fact a negotiation allowing him to ‘resign’ before being fired, and that in doing so he protected a generous payout of some description.

  6. whateva next? 6

    Always reassuring to see facts recorded, linked, assimilated, and available, thankyou for that Simon.
    Is this the crack in the dam? It has to happen eventually, parasites eventually destroy themselves.

  7. Bearded Git 7

    Andrew Little says today on Q and A that Labour would probably ban foreign trusts. “I see no value in them” …”I’d be getting rid of them” he says. Listen:

    http://tvnz.co.nz/q-and-a-news/panama-papers-confusion-corruption-video-6468504

    A policy Key will never steal because Ken wouldn’t like it.

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    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    1 week ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    1 week ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    1 week ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    1 week ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    1 week ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    1 week ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week 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
    23 hours 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    5 days 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago