New Zealand

Division over NZ's RSE worker boost, Pacific reacts

New Zealand's Government announced this month about 2400 more migrant workers will be allowed into the country for seasonal horticultural work, many from the Pacific Islands.

Pacific governments remain keen to get as many of their workers into New Zealand's Recognised Seasonal Employer, or RSE, scheme, as possible

But Unions and economists say fruit and vegetable pickers from the Pacific Islands suffer high costs and poor pay and are often left with almost no money to send home.

NZ's Te Papa comes alive for Rotuma

But in New Zealand, the pandemic has failed to dampen the islanders' spirits.

Fiji recorded its fourth covid death yesterday as the Suva and Nausori corridor, home to three towns and one-third of the population, goes into a lockdown from 11pm tonight to 4am Wednesday morning.

Fijian President Jioje Konrote, who hails from Rotuma, said the world was hit with this deadly virus and Fiji was no exception.

Language is key to Pacific wellbeing: Aupito

The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio, made the comment while launching the Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta - Rotuman Language Week in Auckland on Sunday.

The islanders are excited to celebrate their language and culture together this year.

Last year's Rotuman language week, New Zealand's third, was forced online because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The theme for is Tutur häk ne måür lelei - the four pillars of life and well-being:

Aupito said language is one of the pillars of any people's identity.

Dunedin supermarket stabbing: Man charged with attempted murder

The incident happened at the Cumberland Street supermarket just before 2.30pm yesterday.

Police said three of the people injured in the attack are in a serious but stable condition in hospital. A fourth person is in a moderate condition.

They said the man was released from hospital last night and moved to Dunedin Central Police Station.

He is due to appear in the Dunedin District Court today.


At least four injured in New Zealand supermarket stabbing

The stabbing took place at a Countdown supermarket in central Dunedin on South Island in the afternoon.

One person has been taken into custody, authorities said.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the motivation behind the attack was not clear but that there was no indication it was a domestic terror event.

Incidents of mass violence are rare in New Zealand but the country saw the 2019 Christchurch shooting when a white supremacist killed more than 50 people at two mosques.

Seasonal migrant workers into New Zealand to increase - Ardern

Thousands of spaces in managed isolation and quarantine facilities will be freed up over the next 10 months, many of which will be made available for skilled and critical workers.

Ardern announced 500 rooms in managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) would be set aside every fortnight for certain groups.

Aussie rock legend Jimmy Barnes announces three-date New Zealand tour

Flesh And Blood – Barnes’ 20th studio album – will be released on July 2, before he and his eight-piece band, made up mostly of his family, arrive to play at the newly refurbished Christchurch Town Hall on July 7, The Civic in Auckland on July 9, and Wellington’s TSB Arena on July 10. Tickets go on sale from midday on May 10.

These shows will be the first international dates Jimmy has played since the beginning of 2020.

New Zealand donates $1m as India Covid-19 deaths top 200,000

India's second wave of Covid-19 infections has seen at least 300,000 people a day test positive for the past week, overwhelming healthcare facilities and crematoriums and driving an increasingly urgent international response.

In the past 24 hours, 360,960 new cases were recorded, the largest single-day total in the world, taking India's total to nearly 18 million. A further 3293 deaths, the deadliest day so far, took the death toll to 201,187.

Experts believe the official tally vastly underestimates the actual toll in the country of 1.3 billion.

Pacific Covid-19 response high on agenda for NZ and Australia during talks

Associate Minister of Foreign Affairs Aupito William Sio said outbreaks in some Pacific island countries, such as Papua New Guinea and Fiji, are overwhelming for the authorities there.

He made the comments following a meeting with Australian Minister for International Development and the Pacific Zed Seselja and New Zealand's Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth Phil Twyford in Auckland today.

NZ, Aust govt ministers to discuss Pacific

Senator Seselja is from the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) and has a strong interest in labour mobility so he is expected to reveal how this can help the Pacific's economic recovery post-Covid 19.

Aupito and Senator Seselja's get-together follows their foreign ministers' Nanaia Mahuta and Marise Payne meeting today.

The discussions had centred around the issue of 501 deportees and the Five Eyes matters.

The meetings are the first face-to-face ministerial talks betwen the two countries since the Covid-19 pandemic shut the borders.