News release

07 May 2015
PM acknowledges passing of Erima Henare

Prime Minister John Key has acknowledged the sudden passing of Ngati Hine leader Erima Henare.

Mr Henare was the son of the late Sir James Henare and Lady Rose Henare, and held a number of public and iwi leadership roles.

He was the chairman of the Maori Language Commission, executive director of Maori at the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand, a member of the Waitangi National Trust Board, and an adviser to the Maori King, Tuheitia Paki.

“I am saddened to learn of Mr Henare’s passing,” says Mr Key.

“Mr Henare will be a great loss. He was a great Maori leader and a passionate advocate for the revitalisation of Maori language.

“I enjoyed catching up with him at Waitangi each year in his role as a member of the Waitangi National Trust. 

“My thoughts are with Mr Henare’s family and friends at this time.”

News release

03 May 2015
Budget 2015: PM announces funding for Northland cycle trail

Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism John Key has announced a further $3 million will be invested in 2015/16 to help fund the completion of Northland’s Twin Coast Cycle Trail Pou Herenga Tai.

The Government is working with the Far North District Council on the 84km trail which will pass through the centre of the Far North District, from Hokianga Harbour on the west coast to the Bay of Islands on the east.

“The Twin Coast Cycle Trail is one of 23 Great Rides across New Zealand, 18 of which are already complete and open and which cover more than 2,500km of country,” says Mr Key.

“The Great Rides are the premier rides on the New Zealand Cycle Trail and have proven to be a significant driver of local and international tourism. The funding announced today will help build on that success and create more opportunities for Northland and New Zealand.”

The New Zealand Cycle Trail project was announced in 2009, with the objective of creating a high quality tourism asset that would attract more tourists, create jobs, and boost economic growth in the regions. 

“Six years on, the New Zealand Cycle Trail is almost complete and is going from strength to strength,” says Mr Key.

“I acknowledge the ongoing support of the Green Party in its development.

“Reports from individual trails indicate more than 1,200 jobs have been created and that the trails are boosting regional economies. They are also proving increasingly popular with tourists.”

Mr Key says the trail has the potential to help rejuvenate small Northland towns such as Kawakawa, Kaikohe, Okaihau and Horeke, in the same way that towns along the Otago Central Rail Trail have benefitted since that trail was opened.

This new operating funding brings the total Government contribution to the Northland trail to $7 million and to almost $55 million to the construction of trails nationally.

The Far North District Council will also be responsible for raising the extra funding – approximately $1.8 million on top of the Government’s latest contribution – needed to complete the Twin Coast Cycle Trail.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment will manage contractual obligations with the Far North District Council, including determining project milestones, budgets and timeframes.

News release

02 May 2015
Prime Minister welcomes Royal baby

Prime Minister John Key has congratulated Their Royal Highnesses, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, on the birth of their second child, a girl.

“On behalf of the people of New Zealand I would like to congratulate Prince William, Catherine and Prince George on this wonderful news.

“This is a very special time for any family. The Duke and Duchess are excellent parents and I am sure Prince George will adore his new little sister.”

Mr Key also extended his congratulations to The Queen and Prince Phillip, and The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, on the arrival of the newest member of the Royal Family.

New Zealand's official gift to the Royal couple will be a selection of woollen baby items from Hutt Valley company, Stansborough, including a pelt teddy bear.

“I wish Prince William, Catherine, Prince George and the Royal Family all the very best,” says Mr Key.

A 21 gun salute will be fired from Point Jerningham, Wellington to celebrate the birth.

Note to Editors:

Stansborough produce textiles from their flock of Stansborough Greys, a unique wool breed developed by Cheryl and Barry Eldridge.  The company produces a range of accessories, home interiors, and baby wear. The Stansborough yarn was also used to costume many of the main characters appearing in the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies.

News release

29 April 2015
More details of Prince Harry’s visit revealed

Prime Minister John Key today released further details of Prince Harry’s visit to New Zealand from May 9 -16.

“I am delighted Prince Harry is visiting New Zealand. The Prince has asked to meet a wide range of New Zealanders so his programme has been designed with that in mind,” says Mr Key.

“I’m confident Prince Harry will have a fabulous time here and I encourage all New Zealanders to take the opportunity to go and see him.”

The Prince will arrive in Wellington on Saturday, May 9, where he will be officially welcomed at Government House before heading to the National War Memorial for a Wreath Laying Ceremony.

Later that evening he will attend the Hurricanes and Sharks game at Westpac Stadium.

On Sunday and Monday, Prince Harry will be in Stewart Island where he will meet with the community and visit Ulva Island, a Department of Conservation open island sanctuary.

On Tuesday, Prince Harry will head to Christchurch where he will visit Quake City and tour the Re:Start Mall.  He will also meet members of the Student Volunteer Army at the University of Canterbury.

On Wednesday he will visit the Linton Military Camp, where he will participate in a number of activities with the Army, including learning the Army’s own Haka.

The Prince will be in Whanganui on Thursday where he will visit Putiki Marae, join the crew of the Marae’s waka for a trip on the river, and visit the War Memorial Centre.

Prince Harry wraps up his visit in Auckland. On Friday he will visit Southern Cross Campus School, Middlemore Hospital’s Spinal Rehabilitation Unit and attend a reception with emergency services and disaster relief organisations at Government House.

On Saturday he will join young footballers at a FIFA Under-20 event at the Cloud before heading to the Millennium Institute of Sport. He will fly out later that evening.

Further information about Prince Harry’s visit can be found on the following websites:

News release

27 April 2015
Prime Minister opens new consulate in Dubai

Prime Minister John Key today officially opened the new premises of the New Zealand Consulate-General in Dubai.

The new office will house the Consulate, and offices of New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, Immigration NZ, and the Ministry of Primary Industries.

“This new office reflects our continued commitment to develop a closer relationship with the Gulf region,” Mr Key says.

“It is a signal of New Zealand’s increased investment our growing footprint  in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, and the wider region.”

Finalising the GCC-New Zealand Free Trade is the next step in this story and working on completing that FTA is a priority of this trade mission.

“I appreciated the confirmation that the UAE supports the finalisation of the NZ GCC FTA, and  I will continue to press New Zealand’s case throughout the Gulf.”

“Discussing the FTA with leaders in this region has given me a lot of confidence that greater trade with New Zealand, recognising mutual benefits is welcome in the Gulf.

The Gulf Cooperation Council is New Zealand’s fifth largest export destination. Our exports to the region are worth $1.9 billion to New Zealand.