News of New Zealanders via Global Media

In Defense of Whales

In Defense of Whales

NZ led the anti-whaling nations at the International Whaling Commission meeting in Ulsan. Headed by Conservation Minister Chris Carter, the delegation included officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and DoC, as well as Whaling Commissioner Sir…

You Can’t Buy Happiness

You Can’t Buy Happiness

NZ born lecturer of economics at Stanford University, John McMillan, believes that the obsession NZ politicians have with raising the country’s per capita income to equal that of Australia is a waste of time. “Any cross-country comparison…

Mrs Peace Leaves Her Mark

Mrs Peace Leaves Her Mark

Political activist, peace campaigner and renowned author, Sonja Davies, has died aged 81, leaving an inspiring legacy in her wake. According to her Guardian obituary, Davies – known to many as ‘Mrs Peace’ – ranks…

Land of the Free-thinking

Land of the Free-thinking

New Zealand: Leading a Small Nation Across a Tightrope, offers an in-depth analysis of the abilities and international standing of PM Helen Clark, and outlines the numerous difficulties inherent in “governing a country of free-thinking Kiwis.” The…

4-way FTA

4-way FTA

PM Helen Clark has signed negotiations for a free trade agreement spanning four continents. The Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement brings together NZ, Brunei, Singapore and Chile, and will come into effect in January 2006.

Opposing Views

Opposing Views

Free Liberal weblog comments on a Washington Times article detailing NZ’s anti-nuclear stance, military capabilities, and reliance on its more powerful neighbor. “An interesting story about how NZ’s rather modest defense budget and decision to stay out…

Closing the Gap

Closing the Gap

NZ ranks sixth overall in a new study measuring the gap between genders by the Geneva-based World Economic Forum. The top five positions went to Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Norway and Iceland. The WEF appraisal of 58 countries…

Putting Our Money Where Our Mouth Is

Putting Our Money Where Our Mouth Is

In a show of commitment to the Kyoto Protocol, NZ became the first country in the world to levy a public carbon tax. NZers will now pay an extra $2.90 per week for electricity, petrol and…

New Law Embraced

New Law Embraced

Planet Out feature looks at the newly instated Civil Union Bill in NZ. More than 600 couples registered for a civil union in the first week after the law came into effect. The article quotes GayNZ.com…

Mutual Milestone

Mutual Milestone

76 Tampa refugees were made NZ citizens on April 8, including the youngest on board Azizullah Mussa (now 17). “I’ve been waiting three years for this day to come. I can call myself a Kiwi now,”…

Future Partnership Likely

Future Partnership Likely

Helen Clark has fast-tracked a bilateral free trade agreement with Malaysia, which could come into effect as soon as this time next year. Malaysia’s NST: “For the trade experts, is neither too big (which would make…

No More 5 Cent Lollies

No More 5 Cent Lollies

NZ’s 5 cent coin is soon to be no longer, thanks to a major overhaul of the national currency by the central bank. 1 and 2 dollar coins will remain unchanged but 10, 20…

Narrowing the Gulf

Narrowing the Gulf

NZ has forged closer ties with Bahrain, signing two major agreements on bilateral cooperation in March. “We have vast potential for co-operation, and we have much to gain from each other’s experience,” said Bahrainian PM Shaikh Khalifa…

Built to Last

Built to Last

NZ economist Anthony Byett was interviewed on ABC Radio about the country’s booming economy. “We’ve had a great 10-year period, and the last three years in particular have been very strong … We have the economy –…

Kiwis in Flight

Kiwis in Flight

The “brain drain” issue is back in the news with a vengeance, sparked by Immigration Minister Paul Swain’s newly minted campaign to lure ex-patriots home. Writing in the NZ Herald writer Simon Collins received a staggering number…

Right Royal Stand-off

Right Royal Stand-off

The Guardian ran an overview of NZ media coverage of Prince Charles’ recent tour of the country. Commentary ranged from the Christchurch Press dismissing the Prince as “a faintly comic participant in a toffee-nosed soap opera” to…

Simple is Best

Simple is Best

The British government is officially considering modeling its pension system on NZ’s current superannuation scheme, which is described in the Guardian as “a model of elegant simplicity compared with Britain’s multi-layered mixture of private and state provision, means…

National Symbol Under Question

National Symbol Under Question

NZ’s growing movement in support of a new national flag featured in the Daily Telegraph. Wellington businessman Lloyd Morrison officially launched the campaign in January, with the support of numerous high profile sporting, political, and entertainment industry…

Our History and Future in Global Spotlight

Our History and Future in Global Spotlight

Otago University graduate Chris Ford penned an in-depth three part overview on NZ race politics for the Global Politician. The first provides a historical backdrop to the events of 2004 when, in Ford’s words, NZ’s widely…

Hunt Fights for Our Rights

Hunt Fights for Our Rights

Waikato University graduate Paul Hunt has built a high profile international career as a human rights lawyer and independent expert. Hunt was elected to serve on the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in…

Signed and Sealed

Signed and Sealed

The passing of the Civil Union Bill, giving gay and lesbian couples legal recognition in NZ, made headlines around the world. “It is just a fantastic day for us,” said Christians for Civil Union member Margaret Mayman…

Voters Want Out

Voters Want Out

The re-election of George W Bush has sparked an increase in enquiries about emigration to NZ from US voters seeking more liberal pastures. According to the Telegraph, “the size of victory has led hardcore Democrats, as…

Civil Unions 101

Civil Unions 101

Chris Carter, elected as the country’s first openly gay MP in 1993, spoke to LA’s The Advocate about gay rights in NZ and the Civil Union Bill. “The reason that we haven’t gone for marriage is that…

Crusader of the Highest Order

Crusader of the Highest Order

NZ’s foremost campaigner against apartheid, Trevor Richards, was awarded the Supreme Companion of OR Tambo by South African President Thabo Mbeki in Pretoria. “Its not every day that one wakes up and wonders what award they will…

Basis for Change

Basis for Change

The British government is considering an overhaul of its outdated pension scheme based on the current NZ system. According to the Times, the state of women’s pensions in the UK is “a national scandal” in urgent need…

Exchange of Potential

Exchange of Potential

In mid-October Helen Clark made the first visit to India by a NZ Prime Minister in nearly 20 years. During her meetings with the President, Prime Minister, Congress Party leader, and economic heads, Clark emphasised the…

Mind the Gap

Mind the Gap

The Herald ran a lengthy feature on trans-Tasman cultural differences prior to the Australian elections, claiming that “geologically, the land masses are creeping together again. However, all other evidence points the other way.” According to the writer,…

Travelers Flock to the Edge

Travelers Flock to the Edge

NZ’s booming tourism industry shows no signs of slowing down, with a 20% increase in overseas visitors arriving in July than for the same period last year. According to the Tourism Research Council, tourism will grow by…

Tycoon Teece

Tycoon Teece

Berkeley Planet profiles David Teece, the man dubbed an “economics rock star” by the NZ government and one of the world’s top 50 business intellectuals by global management giant Accenture. As well as advising PM Tony Blair…

Blood Brothers

Blood Brothers

Cabinet minister John Tamihere has spoken out in the defense of heterosexual “red-blooded blokes” and been heard around the world. Excerpts of his speech at Epsom’s St Peter’s College appeared in the Washington Times, as well as…

The Sheep That Roared

The Sheep That Roared

An Australian feature by Claire Harvey likened the Israeli passport scandal to the infamous Rainbow Warrior incident of 1985. PM Helen Clark has cut diplomatic ties with Israel until an official apology and explanation is offered stating,…

Review of the Market Years

Review of the Market Years

Illinois’ Hillsdale College, published an overview of New Zealand Government reforms in the 80s and 90s, penned by former NZ MP Maurice McTigue. The article argued that high living standards result from significant ingenuity operating in a…

Flexible, Shock-proof, and Room for Growth

Flexible, Shock-proof, and Room for Growth

The NZ economy received a big tick in the annual IMF report. According to the Washington-based lender, a combination of sensible policies and reforms over the last 20 years had “contributed to NZ’s robust economic growth, made…

World Gender Role

World Gender Role

Amanda Ellis –  formerly head of women’s banking for Westpac Australia – now has a global role leading the World Bank’s work on gender in Private Sector Development. Ms Ellis also serves on the OECD’s international…

Innovators R Us

Innovators R Us

NZ has been named one of the world’s most entrepreneurial countries for the third year running by the annual Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM). The 41-country UK/US-based survey identified NZ –  alongside Chile, Korea, Venezuela, and Uganda -…

Easy Money

Easy Money

NZ has the world’s third freest economy, to an annual survey by the Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal. Hong Kong took the top spot for the tenth consecutive year, followed by Singapore.

Recognition for Political Torchbearer

Recognition for Political Torchbearer

Mayor of Dunedin, Sukhi Turner, has been conferred the Indian government’s highest honour for non-resident civilians, the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award for the Indian Diaspora. She is the first New Zealander to receive the award, and one of…

100 Years of Class

100 Years of Class

Worldwide centenary celebrations for Rolls Royce  were launched in NZ January 25, with a commemorative dinner for fans and owners held in Auckland. 50 of the company’s luxury cars – including a 1912 Silver Ghost and a…

New Frontier

New Frontier

The NZ government’s multimillion dollar media campaign in the US aiming to lure wealthy Americans to “the new California” is the subject of a December Voice of America feature. Major selling points are the clean/green…

Judith Mayhew Jonas: Alpha female

Judith Mayhew Jonas: Alpha female

14 December 2003 – Dame Judith Mayhew Jonas – former financial advisor to the Mayor of London, current Provost of Kings College, Cambridge, and chairman of the Royal Opera House – was one of nine “alpha females”…

Edge Envoy to Iraq

Edge Envoy to Iraq

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan named New Zealander Ross Mountain as his interim envoy to Iraq. Veteran Mountain has had a long career with the UN and has worked as a relief co-ordinator in war zones in Africa,…

Knowledge Economist

Knowledge Economist

Finance Minister and Deputy PM, Dr. Michael Cullen, articulates the edge phenomenon in a lengthy interview with the  Economist. ” a very significant solid eclectic range of niche manufacturing and service industries which have developed in…

Closer Thais

Closer Thais

A move towards closer economic relations between NZ and Thailand was kick-started by Foreign Minister Phil Goff’s talks with his Thai counterpart, Surakiart Sathirathai, in late November. The NZ government has offered Thais aged 18-30 6 month…

Nukes Not the Issue

Nukes Not the Issue

State Department spokesman, Phillip Reeker, dismissed claims that NZ’s anti-nuclear policy was a barrier to a free-trade agreement with the US on his recent trip to Wellington. “If you want to re-examine that policy, that would be…

Land of Milk and Honey

Land of Milk and Honey

The NZ economy is currently on a high, with the lowest unemployment rates since 1987, 26,000 new jobs created in the last 3 months, and a $1.2 billion surplus in the first 3 months of the…

President Hu Jintao Goes Oriental to the Edge

President Hu Jintao Goes Oriental to the Edge

26 October 2003 – A 3-day diplomatic visit to NZ by Chinese President Hu Jintao has further strengthened economic ties between the two countries. Hu met with PM Helen Clark to discuss the possibility of a free…

Clean Dealings

Clean Dealings

An annual survey by global anti-corruption campaigners, Transparency International, ranks NZ as the world’s third cleanest business environment (equal with Denmark) on 9.5 points. Finland topped the list with 9.7 points, followed by Iceland on 9.6. The…

Shining Happy People

Shining Happy People

NZ was ranked 15th happiest nation overall in a World Values Survey of over 65 countries – ahead of the US (16th), Australia (20th) and the UK (24th). The study is a global examination of sociological…

Edge Breath Freshener

Edge Breath Freshener

Sweden’s Right Livelihood Award Foundation – the “alternative Nobel” – honoured former-PM David Lange for his “steadfast work over many years for a world free of nuclear weapons.” The foundation was formed in 1980 by former European…

No Mutinies Here Mate

No Mutinies Here Mate

The British government has named Auckland businessman, Leslie Jacques, as the new day-to-day administrator of Pitcairn Island. According to the British High Commission, Jacques has been hired for an initial 4 month period, during which time he…

Suffr-edge-ettes Applauded

Suffr-edge-ettes Applauded

Guardian feature on the campaign for women’s suffrage in Kuwait notes NZ’s status as the first country in the world to grant their female citizens the right to vote – in 1893. Australian women waited until…

Little Brother is Watching…

Little Brother is Watching…

NZ’s National Radiation Laboratory has been given the government go-ahead to build a NZ$1 million nuclear test monitoring station in Fiji. The station will be one of a global network of 321 facilities set up in…

Australia Looks to the Near East

Australia Looks to the Near East

The Australian features a 20 page special report on The Pacific. Strongly focused on NZ, the supplement includes a regional overview (“Australia is said to be the superpower of the South Pacific. If so then New…

Jobs for (Almost) All

Jobs for (Almost) All

Unemployment in NZ is at a 16-year low of 4.7% thanks largely to net gains in permanent and long-term migration. Employment Minister, Steve Maharey: “We are now experiencing lower unemployment than all our major trading partners, including…

Clark, Kissinger and South Korea

Clark, Kissinger and South Korea

PM Helen Clark was the keynote speaker at the 50th anniversary celebrations of the end of the Korean War held in South Korea in July. At a luncheon held in her honour, President Roh Moo Hyun described…

The Bomb Stays Banned

The Bomb Stays Banned

July marked the 30th anniversary of “what was probably the first state-sponsored Ban the Bomb protest” – NZ PM Norman Kirk’s diplomatic and symbolic attack on the French government. In outrage at continued nuclear testing by France…