Donald Trump launched US$50 billion of new tariffs against technology imports from China. Beijing retaliated immediately with tariffs on US$50 billion worth of US beef and poultry imports. Simon Bridges announced he wanted a bi-partisan approach on climate change, but did not commit to a carbon neutral target and said he would not accept "extreme" policies that increased household costs unnecessarily or damaged the economy.
US interest rates rose above New Zealand interest rates for the first time as house prices continued to rise here. Winston Peters led the Government in Parliament and is set to become acting Prime Minister. Labour's political vulnerability over justice and corrections issues was exposed. The Public Service staged a "manny-go-round." Shane Jones triggered a debate about Fonterra's future by attacking its performance and chairman. Trump got played by Kim Jong Un, but it may not matter.
Opportunistic individuals ranging from Nigerian drug dealers to Indian students are gaming an under-resourced immigration system to obtain New Zealand visas, according to intelligence reports. Teuila Fuatai reports.
The Government launched reviews of employment law and climate change law aimed at soothing the nerves of employers and farmers respectively. It appeared to rule out a breakup of the Reserve Bank and started considering introducing a deposit insurance scheme. Better foreign ownership data showed almost 20 percent of property buyers in central Auckland in the last year were not citizens. Documents showed officials advised the Government against its decision to stop issuing new offshore oil and gas drilling licenses, saying it would actually increase emissions because coal would be used instead of gas. The economy may have slowed a bit in the March quarter as construction sector activity and confidence continues to wane. Donald Trump waged trade wars ahead of G7 meetings and his summit with Kim Jong Un.
Former MP (and Minister) Peter Dunne argues in his column this week for Newsroom that the Government’s sidelining of officials is a risky approach that could rebound painfully
The decision to ban offshore oil and gas exploration will likely increase global emissions, officials say.
The Labour Government softened its policy on student work visas. Agents for international colleges report faking English language tests for students from China. The Government launched a plan with industry leaders to reduce plastics waste. ASB's parent agreed to pay a A$700 million fine for breaching laws to stop money laundering.
The 8 things that mattered this week included big Government decisions on mycoplasma bovis and methamphetamine contamination of houses, the return of Heather 'H2' Simpson to oversee a major and potentially problematic health sector review, fresh criticism of New Zealand as the 'soft-underbelly' of the Five Eyes security alliance, Rob Everett's warning to banks operating at the 'edge of the law', the Law Society's mea culpa in the wake of the #metoo moment at Russell McVeagh, the frustrating weakness in business confidence and the latest turmoil around Donald Trump's trade wars and the eurozone debt crisis.
A task force to tackle a payroll problem that has left thousands of workers out of pocket will focus on how to simplify legislation while ensuring workers don’t miss out.
Changes to the Holidays Act are being considered by the Government to address large-scale payroll compliance issues.