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24 April 2015
PM delivers speech at International Peace Summit

Prime Minister John Key addressed the International Peace Summit in Istanbul, where historic bonds and current security challenges were common topics.

“It’s important to acknowledge the bonds forged between New Zealand, Australia and Turkey through acts of kindness and gallantry on both sides of the battle of Gallipoli and the forgiveness and respect that subsequently grew,” says Mr Key.

Prime Minister Key spoke to hundreds of delegates alongside the Prime Ministers of Australia and Turkey, and the President of Iraq.

One hundred years on, we each face security threats of a very different nature and the rise and reach of ISIL is foremost among them.

“New Zealand is a nation of travellers, and our country has close and important relations with countries in the Middle East, in Europe and closer to home in the Asia Pacific region - where terrorist groups are operating.”

“New Zealand must play a role, along with others here today, in standing up to the brutality and extremism of ISIL,” said Mr Key.

Over 25 world leaders attended the summit with Ministers and representatives from over 30 other countries.

“In the lead up to ANZAC Day 2015 and the centenary of the Gallipoli commemorations two days from now, it is timely to reflect on current challenges to international peace and security”, said Mr Key.

“The need for a strong UN Security Council and a focus on conflict prevention has never been greater.”

The Prime Minister also met with the President, Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Turkey, the President of Iraq, and the Emir of Qatar during the Summit.

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16 April 2015
Prime Minister to lead trade mission to Gulf States

Prime Minister John Key will lead an 18-member New Zealand business delegation to the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait from 26 April to 1 May.

This will be the first visit by a New Zealand Prime Minister to Saudi Arabia.

“The visit is an opportunity to strengthen and grow trade and business links between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and New Zealand,” says Mr Key.

It will also provide the opportunity to progress the conclusion of the NZ-GCC free trade agreement.

“A key priority for me will be talking to key figures in the region about the importance of progressing New Zealand’s Free Trade Agreement with the GCC,” says Mr Key.

The GCC is New Zealand’s fifth largest export destination with goods exports worth $1.9 billion in the year to December 2014.  Exports of goods have grown by an average 10 percent per year over the last decade.

“New Zealand has a lot to offer the Gulf region and a number of our businesses already have a strong presence in this market. My visit is aimed at opening doors and helping to further promote New Zealand companies,” says Mr Key.

“It has always been my intention to travel to the Gulf as it is an important region and I’m pleased to be leading a strong business delegation on this visit,” says Mr Key.

A range of meetings are scheduled with senior government leaders across the region. 

“These meetings provide an opportunity to discuss our economic relationship and also, given our seat on the UN Security Council, it’s timely to discuss the complex security issues facing the Middle East.”

We have reinforced our commitment to this region in recent years with the opening of our embassy in Abu Dhabi, and the expansion of offices in Dubai and Riyadh.  

The United Arab Emirates and Kuwait have also recently opened embassies in New Zealand.

The Prime Minister will be accompanied by New Zealand Trade Minister Tim Groser.

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16 April 2015
PM welcomes direct flights to Houston

Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism John Key has welcomed Air New Zealand’s announcement that it will begin operating direct flights between Houston and New Zealand.

The new service will provide for a more direct route for the millions of US citizens living in the south and east of the country, and for New Zealanders heading in the opposite direction.

“We already get thousands of visitors a year from states such as Texas, Florida and New York and this new service should allow us to boost those numbers further,” says Mr Key.

“Providing greater links with these states, with relatively affluent populations, also aligns with New Zealand’s desire to attract more high-spending visitors to further boost our economy.”

The US is already New Zealand’s third-largest visitor market behind Australia and China, with 226,608 arrivals in the year to February – a 10 per cent increase on the previous year.

Spending by US arrivals has also grown 32 per cent over the same period, to $771 million.

“This Government remains committed to promoting New Zealand as a world-class tourist destination and we will continue working with partners such as Air New Zealand to ensure the industry continues to grow.”

The new service will begin in December.

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13 April 2015
PM Abbott to make second official visit to NZ

Prime Minister John Key today announced Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s second official visit to New Zealand.

Prime Minister Abbott and his accompanying delegation will arrive in Wellington on Sunday night to take part in the Anzac centenary commemorations.

“It is great to be able to welcome Prime Minister Abbott back to New Zealand so soon after his first visit in February for the Australia-New Zealand leaders’ talks,” says Mr Key. 

“During this visit Prime Minister Abbott and I will participate in the dedication ceremony of the Australian Memorial in the Pukeahu National War Memorial Park in Wellington. 

“The Park was designed and built to acknowledge the centenary of the First World War, and is a place where people can commemorate and reflect on our history and partnership with countries such as Australia.

“The Australian Memorial is positioned right in the heart of the park, befitting of the close and enduring relationship between our two nations,” says Mr Key.   

Veterans Affairs Minister, Senator Michael Ronaldson, is also scheduled to attend the dedication ceremony of the Australian Memorial on Monday 20 April, alongside other New Zealand Ministers and invited guests.

Following the dedication ceremony, the Prime Ministers will visit Te Papa to view the Gallipoli: The Scale of Our War exhibition, created by Sir Richard Taylor.

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13 April 2015
Prince Harry to visit centres across New Zealand

Prime Minister Rt Hon John Key released today further details on Prince Harry’s visit to New Zealand in May.

“Prince Harry will arrive in Wellington on Saturday 9 May and will leave New Zealand from Auckland on Saturday 16 May.

“An interesting programme is being planned for Prince Harry to try and meet a wide a range of New Zealanders in different communities,” says Mr Key.

During the week he is here Prince Harry will visit Stewart Island, Christchurch, Wellington, Linton, Whanganui and Auckland.

More details of the programme will be released once they have been confirmed.

“I’m confident Prince Harry will have a fantastic time while he is here and I hope many New Zealanders enjoy the chance to see him,” says Mr Key.