New Zealand

Pasifika Super Rugby franchise could go to Australia instead of 'arrogant' New Zealand

Speaking to Stuff in the wake of last week’s announcement by New Zealand Rugby chairman Brent Impey that a Pasifika franchise won’t feature in Super Rugby Aotearoa 2021, Clarke labelled the Kiwi organisation as “arrogant” as he revealed inclusion in an Australian competition may be a more viable option.

Impey said that, of the Pasifika franchises that had expressed interest in joining Super Rugby Aotearoa next season, none had the on-field competitiveness and financial sustainability to thrive in the competition.

New Zealand PM says Auckland will move to level 1 this week

Ardern says Cabinet met via Zoom to review the Auckland's alert level and that all signs point to the city's cluster being under control.

She says there were 179 cases attached to the cluster but that there has been no new cases within that cluster for 10 days now.

"There has only been one case in the past two weeks and only five people from the cluster are yet to recover."

She says there is now a 95 percent probability of the cluster being eliminated, according to research.

"I know for many, this one has felt harder, especially for Aucklanders."

Coronavirus: Australia opens 'travel zone' to New Zealanders

People will be able to fly from New Zealand to New South Wales and the Northern Territory - and avoid mandatory quarantine - from 16 October.

The nations closed their borders in March in a bid to stop the spread of coronavirus.

Officials say the risks are now low enough to justify a "travel bubble".

"The establishment of a travel zone between Australia and New Zealand has been finalised," said Australian Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack.

Sounds Air aims to offer first regional zero-emission flights

It has signed a letter of intent to purchase electric planes with the Swedish company Heart Aerospace, which is aiming to manufacture 19-seat, ES-19 aircraft for commercial flights in 2026.

The airline's board chair and director, Rhyan Wardman, told Morning Report the two companies were currently running simulations, to see how the electric planes would work in New Zealand.

Wallabies confirmed to be based in Christchurch ahead of Bledisloe I

The Chateau on the Park, which overlooks Hagley Park near the central city, will be used as the Wallabies’ base as they prepare for the test against the All Blacks at Sky Stadium on October 11.

A spokesperson for Chateau on the Park confirmed the Wallabies would stay at the picturesque venue. The squad is expected to arrive this week, possibly Friday.

It’s also understood the squad will train at the Linwood club, of which All Blacks first five-eighth Richie Mo’unga is a member, about 8km away from the Chateau on the Park.

Call for NZ to turn to Pacific for more seasonal workers

The chair of the PCF, John Fiso, said New Zealand could provide financial support for Pacific people who were suffering because their economies were tanking, while also ensuring the valuable fruit crop was harvested.

One estimate is that New Zealand is 60,000 workers short this season.

Fiso said he could understand the government's wish that unemployed New Zealanders step in, but he said there were also other issues to consider.

Covid-19 alert level restrictions extended across New Zealand

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced Auckland will remain at level 2.5 and the rest of the country at level 2.

Cabinet will review Auckland's alert level settings on Monday 21st September.

"With a view to increase gathering limits for Auckland if we are in a similar position of containing the cluster, if the change is agreed on, it will come into effect on the 23rd of September," says Ardern.

Tonga receives humanitarian supplies from New Zealand

New Zealand’s High Commissioner to Tonga, Tiffany Babington handed over supplies worth NZD$170,000 to the Minister for MEIDECC, Poasi Tei last week.

The supplies include 100 family tents and 500 hygiene kits.

They were donated under the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT).

In April this year, Tropical Cyclone Harold damaged 896 houses. 42 of those houses were completely destroyed in Tongatapu and ‘Eua and part of the supplies will be distributed to these families

Tongan communities in NZ acknowledge theme during Covid-19

Fakakoloa 'o Aotearoa 'aki 'a e Lotu Mo'oni, which translates to enriching Aotearoa New Zealand through prayer and faith, was a theme decided upon by the Tongan language week committee in September 2019.

For Dr. Linita Manu'atu, chairperson of the committee, said the term Lotu Mo'oni is more about God's spirit in us.

"With that spirit, people worship God in spirit and in truth and practice God's commandment, that is, love God with all your heart and love your neighbours as you love yourself," she explained.

Giant wasp nest in NZ took two years to reach final size

The nest, originally the size of a two-person tent, was discovered in the Karekare beach area of the regional park.

Hanging high in a tree, the nest is built from a collection of sticks, bark and leaves.

Auckland Council said it would have been home to tens of thousands of wasps.

The nest is believed to have been expanding for up to two years to its final size of about 1m x 2m x 2.5m.