Communications Minister Simon Bridges today announced a number of appointments to the Television New Zealand Ltd (TVNZ) board.
Dame Therese Walsh has been appointed as the new Chair. Dame Therese has been Deputy Chair since 2015 and a Director since 2012. She replaces outgoing Chair Joan Withers who has served on the TVNZ Board since 2009.
“Dame Therese is a highly experienced professional director who sits on a number of public companies including ASB Bank, Air New Zealand and NZX. Dame Therese will bring continuity and strong commercial judgement to the role,” Mr Bridges says.
Andy Coupe has been appointed to the Board as Deputy Chair.
“Mr Coupe is currently Chair of Solid Energy and sits on a number of private and public companies. He will bring a wealth of commercial and financial expertise to the Board as well as significant governance experience,” Mr Bridges says.
Julia Raue, the previous Chief Information Officer of Air New Zealand and now professional director, has been reappointed as a Director for a further term.
Cameron Harland, Chief Executive of Park Road Post Production and Camperdown Properties, is to be appointed as a Director. He has recently completed a six year term on the Film Commission and is currently a director of Weta Workshop, Phoenix Football Club and the Chair of the NZ Story Advisory Board.
“Mr Harland’s extensive commercial and creative industry experience will be of benefit to TVNZ,” Mr Bridges says.
Mr Harland will replace Barrie Saunders who is retiring.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Barrie Saunders, and in particular Joan Withers, for their service to the TVNZ Board. Joan’s deep industry knowledge alongside her substantial governance expertise has been significant to TVNZ’s success”, Mr Bridges says.
Minister of Transport Simon Bridges announced today that Budget 2017 will provide up to $812 million for reinstating State Highway 1 between Picton and Christchurch.
“The Government’s priority is to restore the pre-earthquake transport links to Kaikoura and its surrounding communities, and ensure these vital links are resilient for the long term,” Mr Bridges says.
“To make sure this work continues at pace, Budget 2017 will provide up to $812 million to reinstate State Highway 1 between Picton and Christchurch.
“The corridor is planned to reopen before the end of 2017 with funding to be provided over the 2017/18 and 2018/19 financial years for work to continue after the route reopens.
“The Budget will also make funding available for KiwiRail to continue reinstatement work, while its insurance claim is finalised.
“The total cost of reinstating the road and rail corridors is now estimated to be between $1.1 and $1.33 billion. This is still a very large amount, and reflects there are a number of uncertainties when dealing with damage and destruction of this scale.
“More than $45 million of work has already been completed since last November’s earthquake, including clearing slips and obstructions, undertaking geotechnical assessments, and reinstating rail track.
“The New Zealand Transport Agency is considering additional improvements to improve the coastal corridor, which could see a further investment of up to $240 million from the National Land Transport Fund.
“The Government continues to stand with those affected by the November earthquake, and this funding demonstrates our commitment to getting these communities moving again,” Mr Bridges says.
Transport Minister Simon Bridges has today announced appointments and reappointments to the Boards of Maritime New Zealand (MNZ), the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).
Mr Bridges has reappointed Peter Cowper to the Board of MNZ. He has been a member since May 2011.
“Mr Cowper’s reappointment will provide Board continuity, as he continues to contribute his extensive commercial and leadership skills,” Mr Bridges says.
MNZ is a Crown entity whose primary function is to ensure the safety, security and environmental protection of New Zealand’s coastal and inland waterways. Its Board has five members.
Mr Bridges has also appointed two new members to the Board of the NZTA - former Mayor of Queenstown, Vanessa van Uden and professional director Mark Darrow.
“Ms van Uden brings a new perspective, along with her local government experience.
“Mr Darrow has wide-ranging governance experience, and Chairs the Audit and Risk Committee for the Counties Manukau District Health Board. His appointment brings extensive transport knowledge and an injection of fresh energy to the NZTA’s Board,” Mr Bridges says.
In addition, Mr Bridges has reappointed Adrienne Young-Cooper who has been a member of the NZTA Board since August 2011, and is a member of its Investment and Operations Committee. Ms Young-Cooper’s reappointment provides continuity, as well as strong governance.
NZTA is a Crown entity whose primary role is to contribute to an effective, efficient, and safe land transport system in the public interest. Its Board has eight members.
Mr Bridges has appointed experienced lawyer, Anna Adams and reappointed Grant Lilly, to the Board of the CAA.
“Ms Adams brings experience in public law and regulatory systems. She is also the Board Chair of law firm, Meredith Connell. Her appointment will provide a new perspective for the CAA,” Mr Bridges says.
Mr Lilly has a strong aviation background after 40 years’ experience in the aviation sector. His reappointment will provide continuity to the Board. He has been on the CAA Board since 2011.
The CAA is a Crown entity whose primary function is to regulate and promote an integrated, safe, responsive and sustainable civil aviation system. The CAA Board has five members.
Economic Development Minister Simon Bridges and Trade Minister Todd McClay have announced that New Zealand will participate in World Expo 2020, to be held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The announcement was made during Mr Bridges’ visit to Dubai.
“Through Budget 2017, the Government is committing $53.3 million to construct a New Zealand Pavilion that will allow Kiwi businesses to highlight their innovative products and services and open doors to new export markets,” says Mr Bridges.
“Showcasing New Zealand to the world is a crucial part of boosting economic growth. Expo 2020 will provide a springboard to promote us as an innovative, solution-focused economy to the 25 million visitors expected to attend from across Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and Asia.
“It will also allow us to build on our strong economic and transport links to the UAE which acts as a global air and sea logistics hub, providing access for New Zealand exporters to a much wider region. We’re already well connected with five direct daily Emirates flights, contributing $700 million to the economy,” says Mr Bridges.
“It makes clear economic sense for New Zealand to participate in this global event,” says Mr Bridges.
The Expo will take place from October 2020 to April 2021 with Mr McClay saying it will attract high-value visitors from all corners of the world.
“Expo 2020 is a vital opportunity to increase New Zealand’s profile amongst new trading partners as well as grow our trade with existing partners,” says Mr McClay.
We have a strong trade and economic relationship with the UAE and $3.8 billion of two-way trade with the wider Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC),” says Mr McClay.
“The Gulf States also importantly provide an entry point into the wider region for many New Zealand companies and a base from which to better access the wider Middle East and beyond,” says Mr McClay.
New Zealand is close to completing a free trade agreement with the GCC, which comprises of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
The UAE alone is New Zealand’s twelfth largest trading partner, with annual two-way trade exceeding $1.9 billion in 2016.
About Expo 2020
Expo 2020 has the theme of Connecting Minds, Creating the Future. The Expo site will be around 2sq/km in size and will contain three thematic areas: opportunity, sustainability and mobility.
These three pavilions will showcase ideas and innovations, and countries that attend will have their specific pavilions spread around the thematic areas. New Zealand has been invited to participate in the sustainability precinct.
The organisers expect around 180 nations to participate. New Zealand is among the first 20 to formally confirm attendance.
More information on the Expo see http://expo2020dubai.ae
New Zealand Pavilion
The Government is about to launch an RFP process within the creative sector of New Zealand to select the best team and ideas for the design and content.
Economic Development Minister Simon Bridges will travel to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) tomorrow for meetings with Ministerial counterparts in Dubai.
“New Zealand’s relationship with the UAE continues to go from strength to strength. This visit will be an opportunity to progress discussions across a range of areas, including economic opportunities and collaboration in areas such as renewable energy and the New Zealand-Gulf Cooperation Council Free Trade Agreement,” Mr Bridges says.
The UAE is now New Zealand’s largest export market in the Middle East, and our 12th largest trading partner.
Alongside meetings with counterparts, the Minister will also meet with Dubai-based New Zealand manufacturing firms and Kiwi business representatives as well as the CEO of Emirates Airlines, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum.
“The UAE is often seen as the gateway to the wider Middle East and North Africa region and a number of New Zealand firms have a presence in market. It is also an increasingly important hub for tourists travelling to New Zealand. The five daily Emirates Airlines flights alone are estimated to be worth $700 million to the New Zealand economy,” Mr Bridges says.
“Like New Zealand, the UAE is investing significantly in innovation and given the complementarity of our respective markets, this presents real potential for greater cooperation. I look forward to discussing this opportunity on my visit.”
The Minister will also attend a Dawn Service to commemorate Anzac Day before returning to New Zealand.
The Outer Space and High-Altitude Activities Bill has been reported back to Parliament today following consideration by the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee.
Economic Development Minister Simon Bridges says the Bill will enable the development of a safe, responsible and secure space industry in New Zealand.
“Space launches are a new activity for New Zealand, and it’s important that we provide a regulatory framework that allows companies to operate safely and securely, while encouraging innovation and industry development,” Mr Bridges says.
The committee has recommended some changes to the Bill, one of which clarifies the rules around photography of space debris to ensure New Zealand meets its international obligations.
This includes requirements to protect sensitive technology. The proposed changes make clear in which circumstances a debris protection area would be declared.
A debris protection area could be declared at sites where a launch termination or accident has occurred, but only if the Minister is satisfied doing so is necessary to ensure we comply with our obligations under our international agreements.
“The Bill does not prevent public viewing, photographing or videoing space launches. However it does aim to strike a balance between public and media freedom while ensuring the protection of sensitive technology,” Mr Bridges says.
The Minister acknowledged the work of the committee and thanked those who submitted on the Bill.
“New Zealand has advantages that make it an attractive location for space launches - clear seas and skies, access to valuable launch angles for rocket launchers, a skilled workforce, and an innovation friendly business environment.
“However, New Zealand’s interests in space extend beyond rocket launches and we have the potential to be a niche player in other parts of the industry such as space research, materials development and testing, weather and atmospheric research.
“There are potentially big upsides for New Zealand from this so it’s exciting to see this Bill moving forward,” Mr Bridges says.
The new law is expected to be passed and enacted by the end of 2017.
Economic Development Minister Simon Bridges and Sport and Recreation Minister Jonathan Coleman have today welcomed the World Masters Games 2017 to New Zealand.
The World Masters Games is the largest multi-sport event in the world, with New Zealand set to host 28 sports, 45 disciplines and more than 28,000 participants from 100 countries.
Under the Major Events Development Fund, the Government has invested $11 million into the event, making it the largest investment from the fund to date.
“The World Masters Games is the pinnacle sporting event for masters’ competitors worldwide. It’s the first time New Zealand has hosted the Games, offering a significant opportunity to showcase the country to thousands of athletes and spectators from across the world,” Mr Bridges says.
“We’ve invested in bringing this event to New Zealand for the strong economic and tourism benefits it will bring with the event forecast to generate 266,000 visitor nights and $52 million to national GDP. It is also a prime example of New Zealand’s ability to host major events such as these,” Mr Bridges says.
Participants range from masters sporting greats, former Olympic and Commonwealth Games medal winners, to amateur athletes and teams who compete in the event for fun, for their lifelong love of sport, and to experience new countries and cultures. The oldest competitor is 101 years old and the youngest 25 years old.
“In supporting the Olympic Games ethos of ‘sport for all’, the goal of the World Masters Games is to encourage participation in sport throughout life,” says Dr Coleman. “I’m sure the efforts and achievements of the competitors will inspire Kiwis around the country to continue with their sport or have another go at something they might have given up.”
Two of the philosophies of the Masters Games are to promote friendship and understanding, along with competition, between mature sports people regardless of age, gender, race, religion, or sport status. “This spirit is very much alive in New Zealand,” says Dr Coleman.
Transport Minister Simon Bridges has turned the sod to mark the start of construction on the $13 million Watchman Road Intersection Improvements project in Napier.
The Minister was joined by local iwi Mana Ahuriri, representatives from funding partners Hawke’s Bay Airport and Napier City Council, as well as local stakeholders to mark the start of construction.
The project involves the construction of a roundabout at the intersection, the widening and strengthening of Watchman Road, and the construction of a new road from Hawke’s Bay Airport to link to Watchman Road.
Minister Bridges says the roundabout and improved airport access will provide a safer, more efficient intersection.
“This project will also deliver better access to both the airport and the Napier Port, providing for seamless freight movement around the region.
“Hawke's Bay is a thriving local economy, and supporting regional economic development through investing in projects like these is a key for the Government,” Mr Bridges says.
The $13 million project is jointly funded from the National Land Transport Fund, Hawke’s Bay Airport and Napier City Council. It is part of a $25 million package of road access improvements to Napier Port, announced by the Government as part of the Matariki – Hawke’s Bay Economic Development Action Plan, launched in July 2016.
The project will be built by Higgins Construction and is scheduled for completion in June 2018.
An extra $700,000 will be available to further support businesses affected by the flooding in Edgecumbe and the Bay of Plenty, say Minister for Economic Development Simon Bridges and Lead Minister for Edgecumbe Anne Tolley.
“It’s going to be some time before things get back to normal after the flooding which devastated Edgecumbe and the Bay of Plenty,” says Mr Bridges.
“It’s important the Government provides the appropriate support to help people get back on their feet. Cabinet has today agreed to a $700,000 package which will assist around 100 local businesses affected by flooding.
“This additional funding will help businesses in Edgecumbe and the Bay of Plenty stay viable while the massive clean-up continues.”
$200,000 will be available for Rural Assistance payments to help rural families with essential living costs, and an extra $250,000 will assist the Rural Support Trust to help farmers and growers to assess crop damage. An extra $250,000 towards a Disaster Relief Fund will support businesses.
“This funding compliments the Government’s existing support. Over 2,300 Civil Defence payments have been made to help people with food, clothing and bedding - around $550,000 has been paid to date,” says Mrs Tolley
“Other hardship assistance payments are also available and so far 135 payments have been made at a cost of over $19,000. We’ve also provided $500,000 of additional Task Force Green funding to employ people to assist the local Councils with the clean-up.
“Yesterday, the Government activated the Edgecumbe Temporary Accommodation Service which will collect registrations from displaced people who require temporary accommodation, establish what accommodation options are suitable and available, and connect them together.”
The Government continues to monitor the situation and will provide additional support if it is required.
Last week the Government classified the flooding as a medium-scale adverse event. This made extra recovery assistance measures available including recovery coordination and Enhanced Task Force Green teams.
Transport Minister Simon Bridges today announced the route for a bypass of the Awakino Tunnel and the next steps for the Mt Messenger bypass project.
“State Highway 3 is a key priority for the Government. That’s why we’re investing $135 million to provide a better and more resilient connection between the Taranaki Region and the upper North Island,” Mr Bridges says.
“A two-bridge bypass of Awakino Tunnel has been selected that was also the favoured option by the public. Design and consenting work will now commence ahead of construction.
“The community strongly favoured improved safety, resilience and journey experience as key priorities along the route.
“We will be delivering a package of safety and resilience improvements along the 58km stretch of highway that includes; road widening, intersection improvements, passing opportunities, road realignments and slope stability.
“Further work is needed before a preferred option for the Mt Messenger bypass project can be confirmed. Feedback strongly supported Option 3, the bypass route, but some concerns about environmental and cultural impacts were raised,” Mr Bridges says.
The Transport Agency is now reviewing the concerns raised and will work with community leaders to develop an option for the Mt Messenger bypass.
“The final solution will balance the desired safety, resilience and journey experience benefits with acceptable environmental and cultural effects,” Mr Bridges says.
It is expected that an announcement on the preferred option for Mt Messenger will be made in August this year.
The project is part of the Government’s Accelerated Regional Roading Programme which is designed to speed up delivery of important regional transport projects.
AttachmentsSH3 - Awakino Tunnel To Mt Messenger safety & resilience project graphic SH3 - Awakino Tunnel Bypass artist impression
Notes to Editors
An Alliance team including NZ Transport Agency, Downer, HEB Construction, Tonkin & Taylor, Opus International Ltd, Holmes Consulting and Isthmus, has been appointed. The Mt Messenger Alliance will work collaboratively with key stakeholders to help take the project forward to determine the preferred option and obtain consents, design and build the route.
The NZ Transport Agency carried out a public consultation from November 2016 to early January 2017 on options for the three projects making up the Awakino Gorge to Mt Messenger Programme. The three projects are:
Dates for construction
Mt Messenger bypass
2018 to 2020
Awakino Tunnel bypass
2018 to 2020
Safety and resilience improvements
2017 to 2019
The consultation report, information about the preferred options and next steps for the Awakino Gorge to Mt Messenger Programme can be found at: www.nzta.govt.nz/ag2mm