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Turning on Key

Written By: - Date published: 10:14 am, November 25th, 2011 - 33 comments
Categories: election 2011, john key, Media - Tags: ,

All the public polls (yes except Horizon) tell us that National should win this election, possibly with an absolute majority. I guess we’ll find out tomorrow. But whatever the result it’s been a costly election for Key. After the teapot tape fiasco and the subsequent police raids on media, his political capital with the media (except for die-hard fans) is spent. Consider this rather frank opinion piece by Chris Whitworth at 3 News:

From smiling to silent assassin: National’s media stonewall

Media and politicians can make strange bedfellows. It’s an uneasy and at times abusive relationship that comes under strain from past hurts and differing needs. … 

So when the Prime Minister meets ACT candidate John Banks for a cup of tea, why was there such a media scrum you ask? Because up until then John Key had given media nothing but double-speak about National’s deal with ACT.

In fact, many in the media feel Key and his Cabinet have completely shut up shop ahead of the election, forcing them to jump on what ever scraps they are given.

Radio New Zealand’s head of news Don Rood says Key refused to front for both of their scheduled election debates with Labour leader Phil Goff on Morning Report – despite requesting the interview at the start of the year. .. Mr Rood says even during the year some National MPs have been “hesitant” to appear on the station and have often pulled out. Labour’s campaign spokesperson Grant Robertson suggests the “cold shoulder” from National is intentional.

A quick look at the RNZ website shows a similar gap in policy information provided by National. … The problem could be excused if Radio New Zealand was alone in this, but National’s reluctance to front appears to be industry wide.

TV3’s The Nation issued a press release earlier this month informing viewers that Key refused to appear on the show. It read: “John Key refuses to talk to The Nation so we’ve gone in search of him … follow[ing] the Key campaign and find[ing] that its endless photo opportunities are carefully planned stage shows”.

And so the list keeps growing.

Key has scarcely appeared on TV3’s Campbell Live or TVNZ’s Close Up – bar the standard leaders’ debates – and refused the New Zealand Herald’s request for a one-on-one between him and Phil Goff. I contacted the press secretary for Steven Joyce – National’s election campaign manager – yesterday for explanation but as of yet have not received a reply. …

So who is to blame? Did the media harass Key into a corner until he felt his best defence was just to keep quiet, or is it arrogance from a party who think the election is already won?

I think it’s more sinister.

Key doesn’t respect the media, and wants to have his cake and to eat it too. He wants the media for all his photo-ops and baby-kissing but then stonewalls when asked – repeatedly – for serious debate.

If the polls prove correct and Key does return for a second-term in Government, he would be wise to repair the burnt bridges with New Zealand’s media, because in the words of former US president Bill Clinton:

“Never pick a fight with people who buy ink by the barrel.”

Or tapes by the tonne.

Anyone else get the impression that Key’s second term, if he gets one, won’t be the same free ride as the first?

33 comments on “Turning on Key”

  1. ianmac 1

    Nat strategy does seem to have been to avoid all serious discussion/interviews at all costs. I suppose if you say nothing you cannot be faulted, but in a democracy surely openness is essential. Democracy must have eternal vigilance but where was the MSM in championing that? A quiet note from Rood and one from TV3 reflects the lack of a champion. Too little. Too late.
    If the Nat machine has treated the population with contempt, then so has the media by their silence!

  2. Roy 2

    I sincerely hope that the media DO stop fawning all over Key. It would be a very welcome change and might change the minds (using the word advisedly) of those who rely on the media to tell them who to like.

    • Tom Gould 2.1

      Here’s a little test for the MSM. Key has plane diverted. Media find out. Extra coating of teflon applied. The test of the MSM will be if they chase this story with the same relentless vigour they chased Clark speeding to the rudgy? Let’s see.

  3. Mango 3

    I thought the “ink by the barrel” quote was actually Mark Twain but it’s true whereever it comes from. Has the media only now reversed it’s massive right wing bias? And will it last? I must admit iv’e been automatically subtracting 10% from national’s poll ratings. The polls have bee decreasing in accuracy for some time now (witness the auckland mayoralty and Hone’s survival against all opinion).

  4. Anne 4

    Anyone hear Matthew Hooton on RNZ this morning? He’s got his knickers in a tortuous state again. This time over a nasty, vicious Labour pamphlet. Talk about pot, kettle black! Has he forgotten the Ex. Brethren pamphlets and his hand in all the nasty off-shoots from that affair? Amnesia is a beautiful thing sometimes.

    I’m sure I heard Mike Williams giggling down the phone-line. 😉

    • Gosman 4.1

      What was wrong with those Brethren pamphlets exactly?

      If you had a problem with them then does that mean that there you also think there is no problem with the Labour party (not a third party) scaremongering with their pamphlets?

    • tc 4.2

      Hooten is simply an extension of the nat PR machine and about as objective as Joyce when it comes to his views. The fact RNZ even ask him on shows where their bread’s buttered so they can look up to Griffin going ‘we did good boss’.

      real public radio would have objective commentators (hardly any exist in NZ) se we get this right/left tennis that does SFA in terms of enlightenment….just what the masters want.

  5. Tom Gould 5

    Time will tell whether the MSM decides to try the ‘fair, balanced and accurate’ approach to political reportage, or decides to revert to their traditional role in a democracy in relation to unbridled all powerful executive government. Going by this morning’s edition of the Herald, nothing much will change after Key’s second coronation on Saturday.

  6. The local national candidates for Dunedin were happy to turn up for our election forums for Otago Access Radio. Michael Woodhouse gave a good showing, and was put his party’s policies squarely in contrast with the others present. Joanne Hayes also fronted for Dunedin South, and gave an excellent view of her politics. In fact, her interview here http://sustainablelens.org/?p=251 at 43:30 sums up her party’s views on sustainability quite nicely.We had a lovely run recording these – we were soft, non confrontational and unthreatening, and I think got a really good response from the candidates, most of whom had no chance of being elected, but were party faithful, and gave a really human face to why they supported their policies.

  7. neo-medievalist 7

    “Much of New Zealand will see a partial solar eclipse on Friday, with Wellington under its main track, space agency Nasa says.

    Many traditions have long held solar eclipses represent a bad omen for rulers – and Friday is just a night out from the general election.”

    http://tvnz.co.nz/election-2011/lunar-night-show-due-eve-4558900

    Perhaps if we burn the pollsters in effigy .. then the economic pundits .. then the print media editors .. then political “researchers” .. we might arrive at a consensus where rulers survive at the whim of frequent online popularity polls or mortal combat in Eden Park.

    Your choice ..

    • Treetop 7.1

      Hope the prediction for the solar eclipse comes to fruition.

      The effect of an eclipse can be delayed for a month and this would indicate that there is going to be a dynamic coalition as I think it will take a month for the new government to be assembled.

      Even though it can appear to be problematic having four parties in a coalition, due to there being a deep recession next year I prefer to have a government with many views. A bit like a war cabinet.

    • Lanthanide 7.2

      It’ll be funny if the “miracle upset” does actually happen. I can imagine this would be reported world-wide: eclipse results in electoral defeat for a “dead cert” winner.

      • Treetop 7.2.1

        I did not mention Mercury Retrograde 24 November 2011 – 13 December 2011. Electrical malfunction, (purchases, computers) travel delays, bad for signing any contract as it usually has to be renegotiated.

        Will have to see how accurate the astrology ends up being.

    • ianmac 7.3

      On the News just now. John Key has banned the eclipse and it will now not take place until a rigorous police investigation has been completed.

      • Treetop 7.3.1

        Lol Mercury rules communication and a Mercury Retrograde also has miscommunication. A Mercury Retrograde can kick in a few days before or after the the actual date, this may explain why the High Court decision was what it was. As for the police investigation I predict lots of miscommunication of the actual facts.

  8. Treetop 8

    Not fronting up is contagious under Key’s watch e.g. Marshall re police recruits and the Ombudsman re asset restructuring.

  9. Blue 9

    NZ’s greatest weakness as a democracy is that we have a piss-weak media.

    It has proved over the past three years that it is in no shape to be a proper fourth estate. It can’t hold those in power to account, because Key simply ignores it whenever he chooses and the media have no comeback.

    If he doesn’t want to front up, he doesn’t. If he doesn’t want to answer a question, he won’t.

    There are no adverse consequences for him, the media just sit there and take it and he’s as popular as ever with the voters.

    It’s only when his popularity falls that he will need to be accountable again. And with the media cowed, there is less chance of that happening.

  10. Lanthanide 10

    Isn’t this Bronagh’s job? Or maybe Liz Hurley’s…

  11. Jan 11

    Chris Whitworth’s “many in the media feel Key and his Cabinet have completely shut up shop ahead of the election.” Agree with nearly all the comments above. It’s the media’s inability to ask the hard questions, to dig where they are unanswered and to provide meaningful analysis of the answers that is the cause of significant democratic deficit this electoral cycle. Umm 4th Estate, hold to account, essential element of the political process. Not really!

    Political parties will do what they can to set the media agenda and indeed to take unpalatable things off the agenda if they can. In this respect National have been very successful. However writing like this on behalf of the MSM is to cry crocodile tears.

    As an example a story which is profiled on the front page on Scoop is not visible on the TV3, New Zealand Herald or Stuff news or election pages is the one about the non-released information on asset sales – an OIA made by TVNZ in August and released yesterday. This issue is arguably transformational for the future of the country. Even on TVNZ’s own webpage this story is hidden well down on the elections page. In contrast all four sites have a high profile story on the diversion of the AirNZ plane to New Plymouth – in contrast a piece of trivial flim-flam and all four are still all profiling teacup stories on their news pages.

  12. mike 12

    Agreed Blue. MSM performance at holding Key to account has been a pathetic love-fest. A strong watchdog is crucial in a strong democracy. Instead we have this timid PC pandering with rank ‘we are in the same business, selling illusory perceptions to the public so scratch my back and I’ll scratch your’ overtones. Time and time again when Key is asked an awkward question, he gives a non-answer, and the journo seems to say, “Oh well, I’ve done my job,” and the story dies on the spot. It’s appalling.

    There are creaking signs that some of the culpable journos are starting to wake up to the realization that John Key has them well trained as a branch of his PRopaganda dept, (as in the OP). But it’s too little too late for this election. Well done guys.

    • tc 12.1

      The Oz MSM would’ve had Key on the mat over tranzrail shares and probably gone before the next shonkey issue like further conflicts of interests (uranuim shares, winery etc) and then the outright lies over all sorts of issues like beemers etc.

      The BBC interview showed how it’s done and Beatson cleaned up English with consumate ease over the GST hike. We do have good journo’s they just have pride and values and as such don’t ply the trade where it should be as it’s not wanted or valued by the cowering sorts at mediawonks, recycling rick’s circus or granny etc.

  13. anne 13

    Key and his crowd are now claiming that winston is in the election illegaly anyone know what is going on here?
    Some idiots out there just dont realise the danger key is to our democracy.

  14. anne 14

    Key and his cronies put forward alot of urgent policies,one of them was the policy stopping
    pirated music etc,however a EU court has ruled that internet service providers cannot be required to install a filter that would prevent illegal downloading of files.
    Thats one for the people who share music etc,we shall wait for a test case here,unless key
    buys off the judiciary.

  15. anne 15

    Yes if you go the the Scoop nz it has it there,i seen the headline so i had to find out.

    • ianmac 15.1

      Thanks anne.http://www.scoop.co.nz/

      It links to Farrar who must have hunted for ages to find apparently that a technicality has been breached.
      But that will go down well. Knock off the opposition.
      And it also shows that he/they expect that NZF will win seats. How sad.

  16. ianmac 16

    Farrar’s exclusive has been destroyed as an anti-NZF ploy, by Sprout and Graeme Edgler who have pointed out that Winston is eligible under the Electoral Act and nothing to to with the Incorporated Societies Act 1908.
    They must know that NZF is definitely over the threshold and therefore not a wasted vote to electors.
    (Some rabid Right voter on Kiwiblog wants to now vote NZF just to watch Winston being chucked out. Ha.)

  17. gingercrush 17

    I see parallels with 2002 and Helen Clark. Like Key, Helen Clark was a polarising figure with many on the left undoubtedly warming to her while on the right we sneered at her just as the left sneer at Key. Both went into their first election as government with huge support. Labour was polling over 50% and Helen Clark’s approval ratings were high as well. There is a slight difference in that part of the first year Clark did not get the greatest media. But by 2002 had well and truly turned that around.

    With Helen Clark a combination of factors conspired as they always do in elections that broke that cosy relationship. Corngate was one factor. The silly signature on the picture was another. The media increasingly grew weary of Helen Clark and Labour. The only thing that stopped that coming sooner was that Bill English was even more unpopular and National well had a terrible 2002 election. It really wasn’t till Don Brash grabbed leadership of National that the media really started getting into Labour.

    If National is the government after this election I suspect he’ll get a rather easy ride initially as Labour sorts themselves with who is going to lead their party in the future etc. But there is a difference. Goff has the respect of the media in a way English never had so even if he stays as leader. The relationship between the media and John Key/National is going to be strained.

    Thus, if National are so lucky John Key needs to do some type of mea culpa with the media to get that relationship back someway to what it was. I suspect that is going to be very difficult.

    • ak 17.1

      Well done ginge. After four years of gradually diminishing natapologia and increasing clarity of vision, you’ve finally seen that the media determines our governance. Welcome to our world: we used to call it Democracy.

  18. Rodel 18

    John Armstrong, asked by RNZ Jim Mora what he’ll do on Election night said he’d be working at the Herald for the next days paper…then he’d go down to National Party’s headquarters for the celebrations or commiserations….
    Says it all about our media, doesn’t it?

  19. hoom 19

    I suppose if you say nothing you cannot be faulted, but in a democracy surely openness is essential

    The trick is they have stayed away from the serious media but been all over stuff like Breakfast, Talkback & pop radio so the non-politically interested public frequently sees/hears Key all friendly & engaging in small talk -> ‘Oh media, quit badgering that nice mr Key’.

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    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days 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
    7 days 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 ...
    7 days 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 ...
    7 days 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
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    1 week ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    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 ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    1 week ago
  • We are all socialists now
    Last week, the government announced a $12 billion initial package to support people during the pandemic. Today, the Reserve Bank is buying government bonds - effectively printing money - to keep up the money supply during the crisis. Normally such moves would have the right apoplectic. Instead, the National Party ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Enlightenment when?
    I recently encountered the following prescription from a Faculty of Education at a leading New Zealand University. At first I wondered if it was another product of the postmodern generator (http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/), designed to create gibberish in the postmodern form, but I’m told it is real: The “schooled” society: Towards the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    1 week ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
    The coronavirus pandemic has of course had a major impact on individual lives and on societies as a whole. But, long after the crisis has passed (assuming it does), we will begin to realise that its real and lasting significance lies in the lessons it has taught us, if only ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
    COVID-19 has plunged Aotearoa New Zealand (indeed, the world) into territory that, while maybe not totally unprecedented, certainly hasn’t been seen during the lifetimes of most of us here today. Our borders are closed to non-citizens, we’re being told not to gather in groups of more than 500 outside/100 inside, ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    2 weeks ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 weeks ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
    by Cultural Worker Late March 2020 amidst the virus. With gigs crashing and burning all around it was without much hope that I called a long standing rest home booking: “ Hi, I’m supposed to be entertaining at your place this afternoon – is it still on?” “”If you don’t ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
    Whenever people demand real change from their politicians, we're told that "politics is the art of the possible". The implication is that change isn't possible, so we'd better just get used to the sucky status quo. But now that there's a pandemic, a lot of things we were previously told ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours 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
    9 hours 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
    19 hours ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day 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
    2 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
    2 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
    3 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    7 days 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
    7 days 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
    1 week 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
    1 week ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
    Good afternoon  The Cabinet met this morning to discuss our next actions in the fight against COVID-19.  Like the rest of the world, we are facing the potential for devastating impacts from this virus. But, through decisive action, and through working together, do we have a small window to get ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
    The Government is announcing significant further support for the economy, workers and businesses as the country unites to prepare for Alert Level 4 in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet today agreed to remove the cap on the Government’s wage subsidy scheme, which will inject a further $4 billion into the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
    The Government is backing the Reserve Bank’s latest action to support the economy by reducing longer-term interest rates, meaning lower costs for businesses and mortgage holders, and a lower currency to help our exporters. The Minister of Finance has signed a memorandum of understanding and a letter of indemnity with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
    Associate Health and Whānau Ora Minister Peeni Henare has today announced the Government’s plan to support Māori communities and businesses in the face of COVID-19. “Our Government’s $12.1 billion economic package will help many Māori whānau, workers and businesses, whether it’s through wage subsidies, income support and worker redeployment, or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
    The Government and the hospitality industry have worked together to produce guidelines to assist with managing and reducing transmission of COVID-19, Health Minister David Clark announced today.  The guidelines developed between the Government, Hospitality New Zealand and SkyCity Entertainment Group, set out how the new restrictions on physical distancing and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
    Four stage Alert System for COVID-19 announced New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2 – Reduce Contact New Zealanders over 70 and those with certain medical conditions told to stay at home as much as they can to reduce risk of contact with the virus Workplaces to implement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago