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Who’s building our broadband network?

Written By: - Date published: 12:24 pm, March 27th, 2012 - 48 comments
Categories: infrastructure, International, telecommunications - Tags:

The Nats selected Chinese company Huawei to build the Ultrafast Broadband network in Waikato and Canterbury after Joyce and English visited them in China. Now, the company’s been banned from Australia’s UFB project because of links to Chinese espionage. Key’s shrugged it off. Maybe there’s a risk, maybe not. But our government should give a damn and investigate. Its indifference makes it look compromised.

And Huawei has form on that front:

“A U.S. Army Strategic Studies Institute report on Argentina published in September 2007 describes Huawei as “known to bribe and trap clients”. The report further details unfair business practices, such as customers framed by “full-paid trips” to China and monetary “presents” to be offered and later used by Huawei as “a form of extortion””

48 comments on “Who’s building our broadband network?”

  1. vto 1

    You do realise of course that you will be labelled racist for daring to question anything about the Chinese.

    I would also suggest that the practices mentioned are equally common amongst US and European companies. And probably east european and middle east companies. And definitely African ones like Nigeria. The South Americans would likely do it as well if they had the means. And definitely the aussies. Better to not communicate then its not a issue.

    • Matt 1.1

      Yes they’re equally prevalent. Take for instance all the accusations of espionage and blackmail levelled at Cisco Systems. Oh wait..

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.1

        Cisco Systems does that on behalf of the US Government. No problem there, we’re “friends” after all.

    • It’s not like Chinese espionage isn’t a credible problem, and I’m sure we’d all be fine if an ethical Chinese company was involved that intended to source plenty of labour from New Zealand- but good luck finding one, the Chinese government is entangled with most of their companies and doesn’t really believe in the same ethical standards that ordinary people over there do.

  2. Kotahi Tane Huna 2

    Interesting ownership structure:

    Huawei is headquartered in China and due to prevailing Chinese legal issues, overseas employees cannot, unfortunately, own shares.”

    • Colonial Viper 2.1

      Sorry you foreigners cannot own shares in strategic Chinese infrastructure related assets. See how it works?

      • Kotahi Tane Huna 2.1.1

        By comparison, China Telecom Corp Ltd ADS is majority owned by the Chinese government, but is listed on the Hong Kong and New York stock exchanges.

        • Colonial Viper 2.1.1.1

          Yes point taken, the Chinese have picked and chosen what they will keep closely held and what they will take public. No hard and fast rules, just hard and fast strategic thinking.

    • Conal 2.2

      “Unless and until Huawei becomes a stand-alone widely held listed company with employees free to trade their shares and without a controlling shareholder, these suspicions and allegations will likely continue,”

      Translation: Huawei is a socialist enterprise (a worker-owned cooperative) and therefore can’t be trusted. If the company were privatised and became a capitalist enterprise (with tradeable shares) then all would be fine.

  3. TheMiddlePath 3

    Just so I get this right, Zetetic …you’re implying that every single company, government and individual who ever bought and/or used Huawei equipment – one of the world’s biggest network equipment suppliers – is complicit in Chinese espionage?

  4. The Baron 4

    Yo Zetty,

    How and when did the Nats make that decision, when it was the Council-owned Enable Networks that decided their tech partner in Christchurch; and Trust-owned WEL Networks who decided their tech partner for the Waikato build?

    It takes about two seconds on google to check this stuff too.

    Oh noes, another retarded smear from Zetty. Nice work on the zenophobic dog whistle yet again tho.

  5. Enough is Enough 5

    “The Nats selected Chinese company Huawei to build the Ultrafast Broadband network in Waikato and Canterbury”

    Source please.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Huawei is a leading designer, manufacturer and supplier of network and telecoms infrastructure equipment. Quite different from digging the ground up and laying cables.

      • Enough is Enough 5.1.1

        I not quite sure what the point of your comment was.

        I enjoy giving it to the Nats as much as anyone but in this case I am fairly certain they did not choose Huawei.

        We begin to look like the boy who cried wolf if we try to blame them for everything.

        WEL is not part of the National party and doesn’t take directing from them.

        http://www.ultrafastbroadband.co.nz/news-and-media/2011/11/2141741268/Ultrafast-Fibre-Ltd-to-deploy-Huawei's-Fibre-to-the-Home-access-network-technology-for-UBL

      • Enough is Enough 5.1.2

        I am not sure what the point of your comment was.

        The Nats do not have any relationship with WEL so I am not sure where Zet got this from and am very curious to find out.

        I like giving it to the Nats as much as anyone but if we make unsubstantiated slurs we begin to look like the boy who cried wolf. The real crimes they are committing will be ignored if we get these ones wrong.

        • Kotahi Tane Huna 5.1.2.1

          This from yesterday’s Stuff story:

          “Trade Minister Tim Groser, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce and Finance Minister Bill English visited the company in China after Prime Minister John Key singled out the firm for possible involvement in the UFB network.

          New Zealand Trade and Enterprise helped arrange a visit by top Huawei executives to Auckland and Wellington earlier this month to explore opportunities for it to purchase from Kiwi firms.

          Huawei has won contracts with Chorus, Wel Networks and Enable to supply equipment for the $3.5 billion UFB and the $300m rural broadband initiative.

          A significant amount of Huawei-branded equipment was evident at Chorus’ phone exchange in Papatoetoe, where Chorus is trialling equipment for the UFB rollout in November.”

          • The Baron 5.1.2.1.1

            Ooh the smoking gun!

            Whoops, none of this states that any of those Ministers had anything to do with the decisions made by WEL, Enable and Chorus as independently run and managed companies, does it?

            Wanna try again?

            • Kotahi Tane Huna 5.1.2.1.1.1

              How about you take that up with Fairfax media?

              Obviously Jason Bourne thinks he has a say in the matter. This from today’s Stuff story:

              “Prime Minister John Key said from Korea yesterday there were no plans to drop Huawai from the ulta-fast broadband rollout, despite Australia’s move against the company.”

              • The Baron

                This is a smoking gun?!

                I’m guessing that this is a reference to reserve powers that CFH may have to override WEL or Enable’s decisions. Again, completely different to being involved in the original decision made by independent, and in two cases community owned, companies in the first place, though isn’t it?

                Do you want a third try? Or would you like to admit that just like Zetty, you don’t have any fucking idea what you’re talking about and are just looking for another desperate, zenophobic smear?

                • Kotahi Tane Huna

                  “Zenophobic (sic) smear.”

                  I’d like to know where you see any xenophobia in my interest in this topic, Baron.

                  I don’t particularly feel threatened by the concept of spying: if it’s war we’re worried about, to begrudge the use of spies would be the heart of inhumanity.

                  • The Baron

                    Look, I’ve got no interest in whatever crazy rabbit hole you’re trying to get into here.

                    The point that both you and Zetty have mistaken is that none of these decisions have anything to do with the National Party. The decisions were made by independently incorporated, and in two cases community owned, businesses.

                    Your Fairfax story doesn’t bridge that gap.

                    This really is quite simple. Now you can get wood about spy movies and playing James Bond as much as you like, but none of this has anything to do with the Govt.

                    • Kotahi Tane Huna

                      Baron, it was the Fairfax story that inspired the interest in the first place.

                      Of course this has something to do with the government. Not the National Party, the government. Do you think discussion of such matters is futile?

                      Perhaps you missed my quote but just to make myself perfectly clear:

                      之勝,而愛爵祿百金,不知敵之情者,不仁之至也

                    • lprent

                      Like the independently incorporated community owned businesses that we have here in Auckland?

                      The Ports of Auckland for instance with a board that is not appointed or governed by the local community, has not any actual accountability to it, and whose members were appointed (indirectly) almost entirely by a past Minister of the Crown. The boards in Auckland that most suspect are just doing the central government’s will with a figleaf of “independence”. Is that the type of “independently incorporated” “community owned” business you were talking about?

                      Or were you talking about the type of “independent” business that gets its funding almost entirely from the government? And is therefore completely beholden to taking hints from central government?

                      Basically you’re talking crap with a few labels that don’t bear much examination.

                      This government doesn’t allow “independent” boards. You only have to look at the sackings that Tony Ryall specialised in in the DHB’s trying to stamp out any independence or the Rodney Hide theft of community assets in Auckland that were stuck under his mates control.

                      If you want to use the argument that these are “independent” bodies. Then it’d behove you to prove that rather than just asserting it – then people might start listening rather than treating you as a gullible idiot.

  6. insider 6

    This is hilarious – Standardistas acting as lapdogs of the US industrial military complex and our South Pacific Yank cousins, and attacking an employee owned company (the day after demanding more employees on boards) and to what purpose? All just to score a cheap shot on Key and Joyce. Hilarious.

    Did you ever consider that this is actually all about patch protection by US telecoms providers and not really about security?

    In the UK, Huawei provided BT’s new network backbone and is working with mobile networks on 4G trials. To allay British espionage or sabotage fears it has hired the Government’s former IT chief, John Suffolk, as a cyber security executive, and allowed specialists from GCHQ to inspect its technology.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 6.1

      I’m more interested in the position it puts Jason Bourne John Key in – caught between his party’s financial backers and his country’s traditional allies, getting poked with a stick by the local media, desperately wanting to show how spyerrific he is while keeping a tight ship on a need to know basis 🙂

    • Matt 6.2

      “This is hilarious – Standardistas acting as lapdogs of the US industrial military complex”

      Ha. the old condemn something as a conspiracy theory by proffering your own conspiracy theory? Irony much, fucktard?

      • Kotahi Tane Huna 6.2.1

        I confess. I am a running dog of the US military industrial complex, but I have to say it doesn’t pay well. I am getting to the point where I think my running dog services may be better employed in my local community.

  7. Kotahi Tane Huna 7

    The US military has given up pretending that their IT systems are secure, and focusses instead on observing attacks and minimising damage.

    So perhaps it doesn’t ultimately matter who the system belongs to. Time to dust off that copy of Pretty Good Privacy (or equivalent) and get serious about using it.

    In classical terms, the network is a “dead spy”. Dead spies are used to spread misinformation. Situation normal, in other words.

  8. Conal 8

    The Australian federal govt’s decision has been widely derided here in Australia. I’m no fan of Key by any means, but he’s quite correct not to buy into this Cold War paranoia, which is pure theatre, without technical merit.

  9. Crony capitalism by National or Corus, does it really matter that much who it is? OK maybe it does BUT the fact is hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars is going to be used for the project so reality check everyone: the government does have a stake in this.

  10. prism 10

    There is an interview Wednesday morning by radionz with the british face of the Chinese firm and
    others I think.

    • insider 10.1

      It was kind of funny that Kathryn Ryan was quoting a Northrop Grumman ‘report’ that was critical of Huawei’s links with the Chinese army and govt. NG are kneedeep in the US govt and military and have a former joint chiefs of staff head on the board as well as an ex us navy admiral. It would be hard to be more connected with a govt and military.

      What exactly is the threat that people are worried about and how different is that than if the systems were provided by Google or IBM or LUcent – all of which I bet the NSA have their noses well into

      • DH 10.1.1

        The threat is security being compromised at the hardware level. The basic rule of network security is that if you permit access to the hardware then you have no security. That’s why Cisco for example freely give away password recovery procedures for most of their IOSs.

        I don’t know the level of home-baked design in Chinese chip manufacturing but I do know that embedded codes can be inserted into chips at the design/manufacturing stage and it would be extremely difficult if not impossible to find them. Security experts can reverse engineer software to find exploits, hidden code etc, but they’d find it a lot tougher with backdoor exploits hardwired into the circuitry.

        I guess it all comes down to China’s intentions & whether they can be trusted or not.

        • insider 10.1.1.1

          The problem with that argument is that an increasingly large part of the hardware for all sorts of devices comes from China, along with increasing levels of design. The Huawei guy said it is just not possible to exert the level of control that some suggest given the multiple systems and software that go into a system. It is James Bond territory to think a black box can be inserted that will monitor and/or control it.

          This is not about military security it is about an economic challenger upsetting the status quo.

          I’m not an apologist for China nor particularly interested in its politics, but if you stand back from the issue and consider it a matter of trust, we should be equally fearful of US powers and intent (if not more so based on capability and history – and I’m saying that as a strong yankophile). China is no longer intent on exporting global socialist revolution and the central committee doesn’t control everything every chinese business does. We very quickly got over mistrust of Germany after WW2, we probably need to do the same about China rather than follow the creepy xenophobic dogwhistling of Gareth the green.

          • muzza 10.1.1.1.1

            “It is James Bond territory to think a black box can be inserted that will monitor and/or control it” – Don’t know much about technology then, and any gadgets “James Bond” like, will have been far surpassed by the time Sean Connery was using them.

            I agree with your comments about the US and other tech firms having just as much to not trust as anyone else, including the chinese!

            The question really becomes, what is it that any firm might want to steal!

            • insider 10.1.1.1.1.1

              Muzza

              the james bond bit was a paraphrase of the former UK Govt head of IS who now works for Huawei. I think his point was that these network being discussed are so diverse geographically and in componentry that it is not possible for a single supplier to do so without someone’s compliance in the organisation/country that owns the system.

          • DH 10.1.1.1.2

            It is very definitely about military security. Anything involving the internet backbone is all about security.

            • insider 10.1.1.1.2.1

              The US military has its own secure networks. Whether they are hardwired separately I don’t know but does it matter? Any communciations with overseas bases could travel through ‘unfriendly’ networks so would need some high level protection from interception just as its local traffic might.

              • Pascal's bookie

                The US military has its own secure networks.

                Yeah. Ask Bradley Manning 😉

              • DH

                No network is totally secure, give someone access to the hardware and any LAN can be compromised. Ethernet is a broadcast medium, set up a port on the switch as a mirror and you can catch every packet sent on the (wired) network using a simple packet sniffer.

                From an espionage viewpoint all you’d want to do is relay (secure) traffic to a segment of the network or internet you have physical control of & where you can catch the packets. That doesn’t need James Bond black box BS, can do that in software, firmware or hardware.

                • Con

                  Exactly, and the only defence against interception is encryption. If your data is encrypted when you send it, and decrypted when you receive it, then it makes no difference whether you sent it over some special “private” network or the public internet, ethernet, wireless, through routers made by Huawei or Cisco or anybody. That’s why the rationale for this discrimination is bullshit.

                  • insider

                    As a non techie that was how I was thinking re use of networks and encryption.

                    @ DH

                    Yes you all you might need is some diversion tool, but how much data are you talking about capturing and diverting? Unless you specifically know what you want, you are going to be trawling huge volumes of data and we are talking about broadband networks not a specific compuer or LAN. That means you need big computers to analyse and big pipes to get it there, all of which would be quite noticable if placed by one country in another sovereign state.

  11. aerobubble 11

    The problem of corporate spying and its cost on NZ. Arguably why would you expect Key to care about losses to NZ business from intellectual theft, I mean he’s happy to sell our productive industrial and agricultural core to the Chinese. Despite China not allowing the same access to their economy. And hey its not like China does have booming copyright breaching industries.

    Key see no, hear no, speak no, hollow politics.

  12. hoom 12

    US manufacturers almost certainly leave backdoors for US govt agencies.
    Pretty sure its a National Security requirement.

    So what if a Chinese manufacturer does the same?
    At worst its the same but open to different people, at best Huawei actually may be more secure.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 12.1

      Most networks are assumed to be compromised already.

      The interesting issue here is the tension between the National Party’s obligations to its owners and its obligations to the country’s traditional allies.

  13. Fortran 13

    The workmen laying our fibre cables do not look Chinese to me – maybe they are in disguise.

    • insider 13.1

      the reflections off their fluoro jackets mask their features. The fluoros are suspiciously made in China…you do the maths.

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

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