web analytics

Key’s comments a blank cheque for investors

Written By: - Date published: 9:32 am, July 13th, 2012 - 48 comments
Categories: law, privatisation - Tags:

Now, I’m no big city lawyer, but it seems to me that John Key may be walking on some mighty thin ice by telling prospective investors in Mighty River not to worry about the Maori Council’s water claim. If it goes wrong, isn’t he exposing himself (actually, us taxpayers) to some major law suits and very expensive damages payouts?

Here’s the scenario:

The Waitangi Tribunal does its thing and, in a month or two, finds that certain iwi have rights akin to ownership over water used (for free, at the moment) by Mighty River to make its profits.

Key says the Government will ignore that finding and presses ahead with asset sales, repeating his comments yesterday that investors have nothing to fear from the water rights issue.

49% of Mighty River is sold. About 90% of us get nothing, while a handful win out – they buy with the price reduced because of the risk created by the water claim hanging over Mighty River and then win out twice again from a reduced issuing price for retail customers and a loyalty bonus.

But the Maori Council has taken its case to court. The High Court finds in favour of the Maori Council. Mighty River is going to have to pay for its water – enough to knock a sizeable hunk off its profits. The share price drops 20%, and stays down as the appeals wind on for years.

Investors say, ‘hey, wait a minute, that Nice Man Mr Key, told us that this wouldn’t happen before we bought these shares off him. In fact, he said “I think the Government’s position will be upheld, and that is that no one owns water. I’m the Government’s major spokesperson and I need to spell out the Government’s position, and the Government’s long held, and very strongly held, view is that nobody owns water”

Like I say, I’m no big city lawyer but that looks a lot like an implied promise that Mighty River won’t have to pay for water. Isn’t that breach of contract?, let alone the much tighter rules around issues of securities? Would it expose the Crown to action under trade agreements? The experts giving evidence at the Waitangi Tribunal think so.

And what if it then comes out that the major shareholder, the Crown, had official advice on the likely results of a court battle that it hadn’t shared with prospective buyers and, later, its fellow shareholders – would there be insider trading issues there? Would that be analogous to the Facebook IPO, where information about Facebook’s deteriorating growth outlook was allegedly hidden from retail investors, leading to a multi-billion dollar law suit?

Key’s really making a mess of this. If he goes ahead, the rest of us are going to pay big time.

48 comments on “Key’s comments a blank cheque for investors ”

  1. Pascal's bookie 1

    Another thing that could happen is that if the Crown acts to extinguish an iwi’s water right in some way, they could be taken to court under the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which Key signed up to and called “symbolic”.

    That could happen irrespective of Waitangi Tribunal findings; it’s a whole seperate recognition of indegenous rights

    • Populuxe1 1.1

      That’s pretty much what Labour did with the Foreshore and Seabed Act.
      Given that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights should already cover everything, I’ve never really understood the necessity of a separate Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as being anything other than political. Article 1: “Indigenous peoples have the right to the full enjoyment, as a collective or as individuals, of all human rights and fundamental freedoms as recognized in the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and international human rights law.”
      I regard Key’s signing of it as a cynical piece of politicking  – most of the content is covered within our own legislation, and that which isn’t doesn’t really relate because it largely only applies to indigenous populations that are not integrated with the larger community – in that sense it is symbolic. Nor is there any aspect that covers what happens when one Declaration comes into conflict with the other.

  2. Kotahi Tane Huna 2

    I suggest we simply refuse to pay. Tear up the TPPA, repossess our property and forward all complaints to Hawaii.

    Caveat emptor.

  3. Tiger Mountain 3

    Eddie’s post points to a familiar scenario where public, ie taxpayer, money is used in court actions to try and deliver a result for finance capital. ‘The people’ pay to be disadvantaged. It is seen regularly in local government when ratepayers challenge developers.

    “We’ll take the assets back with no compensation” is what I would like to hear from Greens and Labour, that should scare the horses. That position is taken as read amongst Mana members I have talked to. The Waitangi Tribunal hearing, referendum petition and growing public feeling must have ShonKey’s toupee lifting.

    • Te Reo Putake 3.1

      “We’ll take the assets back with no compensation”
      I’ve been pushing a slightly less revolutionary line, TM. Immediate return of the 49% to we the people, with compensation at purchase price or current market price, whichever is the lower, over the next ten years. No interest payable, no right to dividends. 
      In other words, investors would risk their money becoming an interest free loan to the people of NZ, repaid over a decade, possibly at a sizeable discount to the actual amount invested. As they say in the UK: ‘Warning! Your investment can go down as well as up and you may get back less than you invested.’ A lot less, hopefully.

      • Tiger Mountain 3.1.1

        Your ‘Real Politik’ approach may well prevail TRP. But you have to push it to the max I reckon at this particular time. The force is weak for a short time. The less ‘revolutionary’ line really just panders to ShonKey. Advance maximum demands and then there is always room to move.

        The Greeks folded, the Spanish folded and it has just become a bad habit imo for nations and organisations to fold after so many years of neo liberalism.

        There is a potential unity between Māori and non Māori here in opposition to asset sales despite the wedge politics the torys are running, an opportunity that should not be missed.

    • No responsible party would promote financial sabotage like that.

      If Greens or Mana choose to do it as a bottom line for coalition it would make it very difficult for Labour to commit to a coalition with either party – Labour know the realities and responsibilities of being in government, so I very much doubt they would be able to go there.

      • Te Reo Putake 3.2.1

        Well, if no responsible party will do it, perhaps United Future can give it a go, Pete 😉
        The point is to send a message to anyone thinking of ripping NZ off that they risk losing significant amounts of money on their gamble. Hopefully the MRP float will collapse under the weight of uncertainty and the other floats will not go then go ahead. That outcome would be beneficial for Kiwis long term and probably end this lame Government overnight. Win/Win!

        • Pete George

          No, it could actually cost the country quite a bit. Lose/lose money. Just because some hissy parties want to get their own way at any cost, despite our established democratic legislative process.

          I don’t think Labour would seriously consider anythjing like that, and if they did it would make it very difficult for them to have a serious shot at running government from 2014. I’m sure anyone in the party with any sense and say understands this, hence they’re not committing political suicide.

          It could be quite destablising for the party if some from within Labour promoted sabotage.

          • Ben

            “Just because some hissy parties want to get their own way at any cost…”
            Like NActUF and their idealogically driven desire to sell the power companies and AirNZ? I mean, there is no economics-based case which can be made for the sale (they’ve given up trying), yet Key etc are desperate for the sale to go ahead.

            Gotta make you wonder what the real agenda is. Bankers, eh? Who’d vote for one?

            You do have somewhat of a point, though: Saying for certain that you’ll buy back the assets for whatever given price, up front, is a risky thing to do – if the cost of borrowing goes up between when that assertion is made and when it comes time to pay the bill, it may not be such an attractive option for the government at the time. Backing out would then be seen as failing to live up to promises, etc etc.

            I think Labour are right not to jump on the same bandwagon as the Greens and MANA here, but they certainly should be making it clear that they won’t rule it out and would consider it as part of confidence and supply agreements.

            You just need to make enough rustling to spook the horses and drive the IPO share value down. That’s it. Remove the confidence and there is no market.

      • North 3.2.2

        Pete George you really are a fool of a man. No wonder UF is the widely accepted acronym for Utterly Fucked.

        “No responsible party would promote financial sabotage…….”

        For God’s sake open your idiot ears to the widespread and respectable opinion that what The Ponce of Wall Street/City of London and what your darling Le Bouffant are doing to NZ is seminal in terms of financial sabotage.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.2.3

        It’s not sabotage – it’s protecting our resources and our community. Selling them off is the sabotage.

  4. The High Court finds in favour of the Maori Council. Mighty River is going to have to pay for its water – enough to knock a sizeable hunk off its profits.

    I’ve heard differently – that if there is a successful financial claim for water then the Crown will be liable, no matter what the ownership structure of the power companies is.

    So taxpayers would end up paying whatever happens.

    • Pascal's bookie 4.1

      Where’d you hear that? And I’m not quite sure what you mean by ” financial claim for water”, but no mind.

      Seems to me that if it’s found that iwi own the water, then iwi and the Crown will have to work out what they are going to do. Any number of solutions would be on the table I would hope.

      • Pete George 4.1.1

        Some are saying Maori should be paid for water (financial claim), some are saying it’s not about money. Pita Sharples:

        What we seek in the hearings of the Tribunal is not about money, it is about relationships and respect, it is about acknowledgement of past wrongs, in the hope that we can move forward.


        And it’s not about exclusive ownership:

        “In one sense Maori own the water because of our whakapapa, our relationship with the environment, the forests, the mountains […] it’s part of our genealogy to be connected and our concept of ownership is not exclusive, it does not cut anyone else of ownership, it’s an obligation to use and look after,” he says.

        Dr Sharples says the Government has regulatory ownership of land, “so in some ways the Government acts like the owner” and says disputes about ownership have a wide-ranging definition.


        I presume others will have similar views to Sharples.

        • Pascal's bookie

          I’m not sure how you get from what Sharples said to saying:

          ” that if there is a successful financial claim for water then the Crown will be liable, no matter what the ownership structure of the power companies is”

          And if you look at the context of his comments, he’s talking about whakapapa. It’s about the strength of the ties to the water, and the respect for it. It’s not about saying that he’s cool with the idea of waters being diverted, or sprayed all over paddocks to grow grass while the rivers die.

          • Populuxe1

            That’s debatable. Muriwhenua petitioned the Waitangi Tribunal for the rights to introduce channel catfish back in 1989. That would have been an eco-disaster. That doesn’t really scream “the strength of the ties to the water, and the respect for it” to me

    • Socialist Paddy 4.2

      Various Maori have said they are prepared for the Crown to continue to use the water ways because it is for the benefit of all of New Zealand.
      But privatising the shares means that some foreign merchant banker is going to benefit.
      So why wouldn’t Maori then be entitled to insist on their rights being respected.
      And why would the Goverment be so stupid as to sell well performing power companies to private interests so that it not only loses the asset but also gets the bill so that a private shareholder does not miss out?

      • Populuxe1 4.2.1

        As it stands, state ownership of water benefits all New Zealanders, including all Maori citizens of New Zealand. Handing over significant control to individual Iwi is no better than selling it to a private corporate because ultimately increased prices (profit) will be passed on down the line, and I’d suggest that Maori are most likely to be hardest hit by such hikes.

    • Tiger Mountain 4.3

      Genius, Pete.

      That is what I took from Eddie’s post. The taxpayer foots the bill to put themselves in a worse position via exported dividends adding to the Foreign Account Deficit and increased power charges sooner rather than later. Excellent.

  5. tsmithfield 5

    “Like I say, I’m no big city lawyer but that looks a lot like an implied promise that Mighty River won’t have to pay for water.”

    Water rights won’t be an issue for investors. Mighty River Power has existing 30 year rights for use of water.

    From the article:

    The Government addresses those genuine rights that Maori have through a variety of different mechanisms, but whether Mighty River Power is 100 per cent owned by the Government, or 51 per cent owned doesn’t alter the 30-year water rights they may have.

    I imagine most shareholders would be very happy for a 30 year window for profits from water generation.

    • Pascal's bookie 5.1

      That’s John Key’s position. Oh well then, everyone can just go home now then I guess.

  6. tsmithfield 6

    “That’s John Key’s position.”

    Given that he is in charge of marketing this, one would have to assume he has received some fairly authoritative advice on all this. So, do you have any reason to doubt what he says?

    “Oh well then, everyone can just go home now then I guess.”

    Pretty much.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      Given that he is in charge of marketing this, one would have to assume he has received some fairly authoritative advice on all this. So, do you have any reason to doubt what he says?

      Just like the authoritative advice he received on the SkyCity convention proposal?

      Oh yeah, he made that particular one up off the top of his head.

      • Pascal's bookie 6.1.1

        And his idea that the UNDRIP is just ‘symbolic’.

        We might found out sooner than he’d like how that works out for him too.

    • Pascal's bookie 6.2

      “Given that he is in charge of marketing this, one would have to assume he has received some fairly authoritative advice on all this.”

      The only authoritative advice on this comes from the courts. That’s why we have them. Otherwise we’d just say “Oh hai, what does the crown reckon”.

      we know the Crown reckons Maori don’t own the water, but that’s in dispute, hence the tribunal hearing, and potential court case(s).

      If it’s found that the Crown cannot demonstrate that it took ownership of the water, then there is a strong claim that iwi own it. So where would the rights to water handed out by the crown stand?

    • McFlock 6.3

      So, do you have any reason to doubt what he says?

      Other than the fact his lips are moving, you mean?
      I’m sure he’ll do ‘whatever it takes’ to ensure the hydro stations will keep running. After all, selling the assets will create ‘170,00 new jobs’ and have us in ‘surplus by 2014’. 

    • Deano 6.4

      ts. try to keep up the whole question is: isn’t key setting us up for some major lawsuits if he goes ahead with the sales and then MRP has to start paying for water rights after he said they wouldn’t?

      Simply saying ‘john key says they won’t have to pay for water rights’ doesn’t address the question of ‘what if he’s wrong’. You seem to be extending some kind of papal infalliblity to Key that isn’t justified by the fact all the experts on the treaty and water are saying the opposite to what he says.

    • rosy 6.5

      “Given that he is in charge of marketing this, one would have to assume he has received some fairly authoritative advice on all this.”

      And he’s doing a really good job at talking down the price. Whose side is he on, again?

  7. tsmithfield 7

    That still won’t affect Mighty River Power if they have existing rights. However, some deal might have to be done between whoever issued the rights and Maori if it turns out that Maori are losing out due to the rights being issued. However, that would be the case regardless of whether the shares were sold or not.

    • Pascal's bookie 7.1


      • McFlock 7.1.1

        I wouldn’t put it past key to confuse an RMA consent with owning water rights, anyway. But whom did MRP get the “rights” from? Was it simply a transfer of stolen property?

      • tsmithfield 7.1.2

        Most contracts I have seen include a clause that the party offering the deal has the authority to do so. That being the case, MRP won’t lose out. Lets assume that the unlikely happens and there existing rights are annulled and they have to start paying Maori directly for those rights, then MRP will have a legitimate claim against who ever issued the rights for their loss. So, it shouldn’t affect their profitability at all.

        Personally, I would be happy to invest on that basis, although the yield is a bit too low to interest me.

        • Pascal's bookie

          Well done, you seem to have caught up with the OP.

          • tsmithfield

            Doesn’t mean it wouldn’t interest other people. Someone looking for a low risk investment option with a safe dividend return and the prospect of capital gain over time would go for this. It all depends on your sensitivity to risk balanced against the expected return.

            • Pascal's bookie

              I hear the pope wears a funny hat.

              • Colonial Viper

                ts is trying to reduce the decision to sell off our assets to routine capitalist investor speak.

                • tsmithfield

                  It never ceases to amaze me how lefties struggle with the concept of risk and return. Utilities offer investors a very safe option in uncertain times for parking their money somewhere that still provides a return and capital appreciation.

                  Compare that to Short-term US Treasury bonds where investors are willing to park their money at virtually no return (currently .07% pa on 3month bonds) just to keep their money safe.

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    Better example would be the longer term bonds that are actaully negative in real terms. It’s well enough undersood there ts, it’s just not relevant.

                    Thing that makes me laugh about many righties is that every string of thought leads to their own wallet, and if it doesn’t, they lose interest and start talking about their wallet.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    I’m quite aware of the risk/return argument that capitalists and their sycophants use and would like to point out the corollary – no risk, no return.

  8. North 8

    TS is in fact obfuscating, unwittingly however.

    The patent fact that the issue is immensely bigger than – “It all depends on your sensitivity to risk balanced against the expected return.” – is missed on him completely.

    Ignore the greedy, blinkered wanker.

    • tsmithfield 8.1

      You obviously haven’t done much investing. If you had you would know that it is one of the few relevant considerations. That, alongside factors such as liquidity (how easy it is to cash up an investment). Shares in a large publicly listed company score quite well in that respect as well.

  9. Yes John Key may be opening the tax payer up to big law suits over water rights, but, it’s the tax payer who will pay not John Key so he just does not worry about it.

    We are only workers, that means in his book we are only there to keep the country working other than that he does not care a rats arse about us.

    He won’t have to pay anything so all is sweet.

    • McFlock 9.1

      once again gambling with other peoples’ money.

      • mike e 9.1.1

        McF bank of America involved in yet another scandal money laundering this time once again selective memory loss has occurred.

  10. RedLogix 10

    It’s just occurred to me that when it comes to hydro power generation to with the water and more to do with gravity.

    So who ‘owns the gravity’ again?

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Government to review housing settings
    New Zealand’s stronger-than-expected economic performance has flowed through to housing demand, so the Government will review housing settings to improve access to the market, the Finance Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “Our focus is on improving access to the housing market for first home buyers and ensuring house price growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Crown accounts reflect Govt’s careful economic management
    The better-than-expected Crown accounts released today show the Government’s careful management of the COVID-19 health crisis was the right approach to support the economy. As expected, the Crown accounts for the year to June 2020 show the operating balance before gains and losses, or OBEGAL, was in deficit. However that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Community launch marks next step in addressing racism in education
    The launch of Te Hurihanganui in Porirua today is another important milestone in the work needed to address racism in the education system and improve outcomes for Māori learners and their whānau, Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis says. Budget 2019 included $42 million over three years to put Te Hurihanganui ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Government to consider recommendations on DNA use in criminal investigations
    The Minister of Justice has received the Law Commission’s recommending changes to the law governing the way DNA is used in criminal investigations. The report, called The Use of DNA in Criminal Investigations – Te Whahamahi I te Ira Tangata I ngā Mātai Taihara, recommends new legislation to address how ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Speech to Wakatū Nelson regional hui on trade
    First, I want to express my thanks to Te Taumata for this hui and for all the fantastic work you are doing for Māori in the trade space. In the short time that you’ve been operating you’ve already contributed an enormous amount to the conversation, and developed impressive networks.  I ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Speech to Primary Industries Summit
    Thank you for the opportunity to speak to you today about the significant contribution the food and fibres sector makes to New Zealand and how this Government is supporting that effort. I’d like to start by acknowledging our co-Chairs, Terry Copeland and Mavis Mullins, my colleague, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Fast track referrals will speed up recovery and boost jobs and home building
    The Government is taking action to increase jobs, speed up the economic recovery and build houses by putting three more projects through its fast track approval process. “It’s great to see that the fast-track consenting process is working. Today we have referred a mix of potential projects that, if approved, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Papakāinga provides critically needed homes in Hastings
    A papakāinga opened today by the Minister for Māori Development the Hon Willie Jackson will provide whānau with much needed affordable rental homes in Hastings. The four home papakāinga in Waiōhiki is the first project to be completed under the ‘Hastings Place Based’ initiative. This initiative is a Government, Hastings ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand ready to host APEC virtually
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern took over the leadership of APEC earlier today, when she joined leaders from the 21 APEC economies virtually for the forum’s final 2020 meeting. “We look forward to hosting a fully virtual APEC 2021 next year. While this isn’t an in-person meeting, it will be one ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Revival of Māori Horticulturists
    The rapid revival of Māori horticulture was unmistakeable at this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy Awards, with 2020 marking the first time this iconic Māori farming event was dedicated to horticulture enterprises. Congratulating finalists at the Awards, Māori Development Minister Willie Jackson said growing large-scale māra kai is part of Māori DNA. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Emergency benefit to help temporary visa holders
    From 1 December, people on temporary work, student or visitor visas who can’t return home and or support themselves may get an Emergency Benefit from the Ministry of Social Development, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced today. Previously, temporary visa holders in hardship because of COVID-19 have had ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • School sustainability projects to help boost regional economies
    Forty one schools from the Far North to Southland will receive funding for projects that will reduce schools’ emissions and save them money, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This is the second round of the Sustainability Contestable Fund, and work will begin immediately. The first round announced in April ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Farmer-led projects to improve water health in Canterbury and Otago
    More than $6 million will be spent on helping farmers improve the health of rivers, wetlands, and habitat biodiversity in Canterbury and Otago, as well as improving long-term land management practices, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. Four farmer-led catchment group Jobs for Nature projects have between allocated between $176,000 and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Tupu Aotearoa continues expansion to Pacific communities in Nelson, Marlborough, Tasman & Northl...
    Pacific communities in Nelson, Marlborough, Tasman and Northland will benefit from the expansion of the Tupu Aotearoa programme announced today by the Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio. The programme provides sustainable employment and education pathways and will be delivered in partnership with three providers in Northland and two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New primary school and classrooms for 1,200 students in South Island
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins unveiled major school building projects across the South Island during a visit to Waimea College in Nelson today. It’s part of the Government’s latest investment of $164 million to build new classrooms and upgrade schools around the country. “Investments like this gives the construction industry certainty ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Minister of Māori Development pays tribute to Rudy Taylor
      Today the Minister of Māori Development, alongside other Government Ministers and MP’s said their final farewells to Nga Puhi Leader Rudy Taylor.  “Rudy dedicated his life to the betterment of Māori, and his strong approach was always from the ground up, grassroots, sincere and unfaltering”  “Over the past few ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister to attend APEC Leaders’ Summit
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will attend the annual APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting and associated events virtually today and tomorrow. “In a world where we cannot travel due to COVID-19, continuing close collaboration with our regional partners is key to accelerating New Zealand’s economic recovery,” Jacinda Ardern said. “There is wide ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Speech to Infrastructure NZ Symposium
    Tena Koutou, Tena Koutou and thank you for inviting me to speak to you today. This is a critical time for New Zealand as we respond to the damage wreaked by the global COVID-19 pandemic. It is vital that investment in our economic recovery is well thought through, and makes ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Pike River 10 Year Anniversary Commemorative Service
    Tēnei te mihi ki a tātau katoa e huihui nei i tēnei rā Ki a koutou ngā whānau o te hunga kua riro i kōnei – he mihi aroha ki a koutou Ki te hapori whānui – tēnā koutou Ki ngā tāngata whenua – tēnā koutou Ki ngā mate, e ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Huge investment in new and upgraded classrooms to boost construction jobs
    Around 7,500 students are set to benefit from the Government’s latest investment of $164 million to build new classrooms and upgrade schools around the country. “The election delivered a clear mandate to accelerate our economic recovery and build back better. That’s why we are prioritising construction projects in schools so more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Keeping Pike River Mine promises 10 years on
    Ten years after the Pike River Mine tragedy in which 29 men lost their lives while at work, a commemorative service at Parliament has honoured them and their legacy of ensuring all New Zealand workplaces are safe. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern attended the event, along with representatives of the Pike ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Additional testing to strengthen border and increase safety of workers
    New testing measures are being put in place to increase the safety of border workers and further strengthen New Zealand’s barriers against COVID-19, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “These strengthened rules – to apply to all international airports and ports – build on the mandatory testing orders we’ve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More public housing delivered in Auckland
    The Government’s investment in public housing is delivering more warm, dry homes with today’s official opening of 82 new apartments in New Lynn by the Housing Minister Megan Woods. The Thom Street development replaces 16 houses built in the 1940s, with brand new fit-for-purpose public housing that is in high ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Agreement advanced to purchase up to 5 million COVID-19 vaccines
    The Government has confirmed an in-principle agreement to purchase up to 5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 5 million people – from Janssen Pharmaceutica, subject to the vaccine successfully completing clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. “This agreement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will leave a conservation legacy for Waikanae awa
    Ninety-two jobs will be created to help environmental restoration in the Waikanae River catchment through $8.5 million of Jobs for Nature funding, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan announced today. “The new funding will give a four-year boost to the restoration of the Waikanae awa, and is specifically focussed on restoration through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Dunedin Hospital project progresses to next stage
    As the new Dunedin Hospital project progresses, the Government is changing the oversight group to provide more technical input, ensure continued local representation, and to make sure lessons learnt from Dunedin benefit other health infrastructure projects around the country. Concept design approval and the release of a tender for early ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Jump in apprentice and trainee numbers
    The number of New Zealanders taking up apprenticeships has increased nearly 50 percent, and the number of female apprentices has more than doubled. This comes as a Government campaign to raise the profile of vocational education and training (VET) begins. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • ReBuilding Nations Symposium 2020 (Infrastructure NZ Conference opening session)
    Tena koutou katoa and thank you for the opportunity to be with you today. Can I acknowledge Ngarimu Blair, Ngati Whatua, and Mayor Phil Goff for the welcome. Before I start with my substantive comments, I do want to acknowledge the hard work it has taken by everyone to ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand's biosecurity champions honoured
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor has paid tribute to the winners of the 2020 New Zealand Biosecurity Awards. “These are the people and organisations who go above and beyond to protect Aotearoa from pests and disease to ensure our unique way of life is sustained for future generations,” Damien O’Connor says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tourism Industry Aotearoa Conference
    speech to Tourism Industry Aotearoa annual summit Te Papa,  Wellington Introduction Nau mai, haere mai Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, Ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou. Thank you Tourism Industry Aotearoa for hosting today’s Summit. In particular, my acknowledgements to TIA Chair Gráinne Troute and Chief Executive Chris Roberts. You ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets announced as Government’s second market study
    The Government has today launched a market study to ensure New Zealanders are paying a fair price for groceries.   “Supermarkets are an integral part of our communities and economy, so it’s important to ensure that Kiwis are getting a fair deal at the checkout,” Minister of Commerce and Consumer ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Masks to be worn on Auckland public transport and all domestic flights
    Masks will need to be worn on all public transport in Auckland and in and out of Auckland and on domestic flights throughout the country from this Thursday, Minister for COVID-19 Response Chris Hipkins said today. “I will be issuing an Order under the COVID-19 Response Act requiring the wearing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand signs Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership
    Increase to New Zealand’s GDP by around $2 billion each year Increase opportunities for NZ exporters to access regional markets Cuts red tape and offers one set of trade rules across the Asia Pacific region New government procurement, competition policy and electronic commerce offers NZ exporters increased business opportunities Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister acknowledges students as exams begin
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins has recognised the extraordinary challenges students have faced this year, ahead of NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams which begin on Monday. “I want to congratulate students for their hard work during a year of unprecedented disruption, and I wish students all the best as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister meets with key ASEAN and East Asia Summit partners
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today attended the ASEAN-New Zealand Commemorative Summit and discussed with Leaders a range of shared challenges facing the Indo-Pacific region, including: The ongoing management of the COVID-19 pandemic; The importance of working collectively to accelerate economic recovery; and Exploring further opportunities for partners to work more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Veterans Affairs Summit held in Korea
    A Ministerial Summit on Veterans’ Affairs was held in the Republic of Korea this week. Ministers with veteran responsibilities were invited from all 22 countries that had been part of the United Nations Forces during the Korean War (1950 – 1953). The Summit marked the 70th anniversary of the outbreak ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clear direction set for the education system, skills prioritised
    The Government has released a set of priorities for early learning through to tertiary education and lifelong learning to build a stronger, fairer education system that delivers for all New Zealanders. “The election delivered a clear mandate from New Zealanders to accelerate our plan to reduce inequalities and make more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • A Progressive Agenda
    Speech to the Climate Change + Business Conference, November 12, 2020 Tena koutou katoa Thank you for inviting me to speak here today. It is great to see us all come together for a common cause: to redefine our future in the face of unprecedented times.  Covid-19 and climate change are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Wellington Pasifika Business Awards
    Thank you for having me join with you as we celebrate the success of Pacific businesses tonight, and recognise the resilient and innovative entrepreneurs who lead them. Equally important to me is, that we are also able tonight to offer up our gratitude to those leaders who have organised and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Commemorative address at Act of Remembrance for Armistice Day
    Tuatahi māku  Ka mihi tu ki a koe Pita E pīkauria ana i te mana o Ngā tūpuna o te whenua nei. Thank you Bernadette for your warm introduction. I would also like to reflect on your acknowledgments and welcome Peter Jackson, Taranaki Whānui; Members of the National War Memorial ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago