New Zealand

NZ pledges further $1.5 million to Pacific Islands Cyclone Gita relief

The money is on top of the $750,000 (US$552,000) that the Government has already contributed to the relief efforts.

“This additional funding will be directed to Tonga, Samoa and Fiji which have all felt the impact of the cyclone,” said Peters.

“A picture of the extent of damage caused by Cyclone Gita is emerging and it is clear a big response and clean-up job lies ahead. We are here to help our neighbours get through this,” he said.

Kiwis World Cup review completed

New Zealand Rugby League has received a draft copy of the review which will be presented to the board at the end of the month.

The Kiwis failed to make the semi finals of the tournament, beaten by Tonga in pool play and then eliminated by Fiji in the quarterfinals.

In a statement New Zealand Rugby League chair Reon Edwards said the panel's findings will be made public early in March 2018, however the Board has agreed to make two immediate changes.

Cyclone fears: New Zealand could face direct hit, warnings for Auckland and Northland

And Weatherwatch.co.nz says that although it's not completely clear if it will affect the country, previous cyclones have been deadly because of dangerous rips and large waves.

The tropical cyclone is due to form around Fiji or Tonga and, according to computer modellings, will intensify as it drifts west, possibly becoming "severe".

It's also claiming that it will "be a much bigger storm than [Cyclone] Fehi", which struck the Pacific last week.

RSE scheme likely to keep growing, says NZ minister

Around 11,000 Pacific people are working in New Zealand's viticulture and horticulture sectors this season under the RSE scheme.

Since 2014, the number of RSE workers has risen each year, due to increased demand from employers.

The Workplace Relations Minister Iain Lees-Galloway said he thinks the RSE scheme will keep growing.

"We're seeing the industries that make use of the scheme growing. There is potential for it to maybe expand into other industries as well in the future. That's something that we're considering at this stage.

NZ supports PNG with K35m

New Zealand High Commissioner Sue Mackwell officially signed the documents today in Port Moresby with APEC Minister Justin Tkatchenko.

New Zealand was one of the first economies to support PNG’s bid to host APEC 2018.

In 2017, the New Zealand government established a NZ$8 million APEC Fund to support PNG’s host year.

“We have now completed the assessment of the first round of applications to the fund.

More Pacific people appeal to stay in NZ for medical treatment

Among them are Tongans requiring life saving medical treatment like dialysis. While kidney disease is a common ailment in Tonga, treatment isn't publicly available there.

Renal specialist in Auckland Dr Viliami Tutone said the number of non-residents from the Pacific he treats was definitely on the rise.

Dr Tutone, who is a Nephrologist, said it was a tough and sad reality.

"We do have our fair share at Middlemore of non-residents," he said.

New Zealand rugby player has surgery on broken jaw

Veainu, who represented Tonga at the 2015 World Cup, was hurt while taking a high ball during his side's 33-10 loss to Irish club Munster in their European Champions Cup tie last weekend.

The incident provoked a sharp response from Leicester coach Matt O'Connor, who insinuated that Munster player Andrew Conway didn't take enough "care" of Veainu during the collision.

Despite the Irish wing being concussed during the incident, O'Conner was not prepared to let him off the hook - alleging he "smashed" his head into the face of Veainu at Thomond Park in Limerick.

NZ aid for Manus refugees could benefit island's hospital

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern promised the money last the month after restating the offer to resettle 150 refugees from Australian offshore detention.

Deputy secretary Jeff Langley from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said there are a number of different ways the money could be channelled including to the Red Cross and other NGOs operating on the island.

He said the ministry is also talking to the Papua New Guinea government to identify needs created by the refugee population on the island.

Lakhan hopes Aust & NZ will soon become full members of PGC

“I hope that this is the last time Australia and New Zealand will participate in our games as our guests.

“Within the next 12 to 18 months we hope to make the necessary changes to our Constitution which will allow them membership to the Council,” said PGC president Vidya Lakhan.

Australia and New Zealand were first invited as guest and competed in four sports at the 2015 Pacific Games in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.

Here at the Pacific Mini Games in Vanuatu the Trans-Tasman neighbours were invited for two sports, rugby 7s and weightlifting.

Aus, NZ will make Pacific Games stronger - PGC

The Trans-Tasman neighbours were invited to take part in four sports at the 2015 Games in Port Moresby, increasing to eight for the 2019 edition in Samoa.

Australia and New Zealand make their Mini Games debut in Port Vila this week in weightlifting, having declined to enter teams in rugby sevens.

The President of the Pacific Games Council, Vidhya Lakhan, said the participation of Australia and New Zealand would ensure the event is recognised around the world.

"Most of the continents have their own Continental Games," Lakhan said.