New Zealand

Worker at Auckland Airport tests positive, plus one historical case

In a statement, the ministry said the usual protocol of isolating the case, interviewing them and tracing their contacts and movements was under way.

There are no new cases of Covid-19 in the community today.

The ministry said more information would be provided later today and the case would be included in tomorrow's totals.

The historical case was a recent returnee from Somalia via UAE who was tested on day 12 of their stay, but was considered recovered, the ministry said.

Australia opens travel bubble with New Zealand

The long-awaited initiative removes the need for visitors to quarantine.

Both countries have contained Covid outbreaks and kept infection rates low, in large part due to hard borders.

Excited passengers crowded Australian airports ahead of reunions with family and friends.

Thousands of people are expected to travel on Monday with some rising before dawn to get ready to board.

"I didn't realise how emotional I was going to be today," passenger Dawn Tratt told the BBC at Sydney airport.

Man seriously injured after airborne car gets stuck in fruit bins in NZ

A police spokesperson said the car was seen speeding the wrong way down Karamu Road in Hastings and failed to stop for police just after 12.30am, fleeing down Kenilworth Road.

It hit gravel at the base of railway lines, become airborne and went over a fence, crashing into the fruit bins and ending about 10 metres above the ground.

Fire and Emergency spokesperson Mike Wanoa said rescuers used ladders to reach the man in the vehicle, then cut him free.

He was taken to hospital with serious injuries.

NZ's football World Cup venues to be unveiled

Australia and New Zealand will jointly host the 32 team tournament with 12 cities from both countries having bid to host games.

The 64 games will be split between the two countries with the tournament opener and a semi-final to be played here while Sydney has already been confirmed as the host city for the final.

Football's world govenring body FIFA has carried out an eight month survey of each of the 12 candidate host cities which include, Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin, Hamilton and Wellington.

Fiji's Bula Bubble suffers setback

Fiji's government said it has proven itself as a safe destination for travellers during the pandemic with no cases reported for more than 320 days.

Fiji said it was ready to open its border to Australia and New Zealand and urged both countries to join Fiji's so-called Bula Bubble scheme.

But its major regional partners say the Fijians are not on the priority list for a seat on the trans-Tasman travel bubble, just yet.

New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Monday several concerns needed to be resolved before a trans-Tasman bubble could go ahead.

Amnesty urges urgent action by Australia, NZ on PNG covid surge

Hundreds of new confirmed Covid cases in the past few days have taken PNG's total number of cases to nearly 2,500.

Despite limited testing, the picture of high community transmission is becoming glaringly clear, particularly in the capital Port Moresby and other urban areas.

A proliferation of cases among health workers has only exacerbated the shortcomings of PNG's ailing health system in this time of crisis.

Pasifika health providers pivotal in vaccine roll-out says Aupito

The first priority group included border and managed isolation quarantine workers and their household contacts.

The second priority group are front-line health workers and people living in high-risk settings such as older people in South Auckland, people in residential care and older people particularly Māori and Pacific.

Aupito William Sio told RNZ Pacific that providers have trusted relationships with the communities they serve, and they will be able to identify and vaccinate the Pasifika elderly in their regions.

ANZ Bank to pay $280,000 over credit card insurance

The bank admitted breaches of the Financial Markets Conduct Act after the Financial Markets Authority filed proceedings in June last year.

The Authority said ANZ issued duplicate policies to some customers which provided no additional benefits.

It also failed to cancel policies for ineligible customers, while continuing to charge them.

The penalty was in line with the Authority's recommendation to the court.

     

PM makes alert level announcement for Auckland

Cabinet met this afternoon to decide whether the risk of Covid-19 spreading has diminished enough for Auckland to move to alert level 1.

Eight cases that had recently emerged had all been linked and close contacts of the mother of a family at the centre of the outbreak had all produced negative results, she said.

Cabinet had decided to make face coverings mandatory in all public transport across NZ at levels one and two.

Pasifika unemployment in NZ rising, report shows

The State of the Nation report shows Pasifika unemployment at 8.1 percent, up from 7.4 percent the previous year and nearly twice that of Pakeha at 4.3 percent.

Salvation Army lawyer and policy analyst Ronji Tanielu said the job losses that came with Covid-19 restrictions impacted a lot of Pasifika people.

"If you think about where Pasifika people are located in our industries, we're generally making up hospitality, manufacturing, even some tourism and those were some of the areas that were directly affected by the job losses because of Covid."