New Zealand hands out extra cash to fight 'inflation storm'
New Zealand Budget New Zealand Finance Minister Grant Robertson, front left, is on his way to present his budget to Parliament with ministers, from left, David Parker, obscured, Andrew Little, Megan Woods, and Peeni Henare, right, in Wellington, New Zealand, Thursday, May 19, 2022. Other plans include increasing health spending by a record amount, putting more money into reducing greenhouse gas emissions and boosting defense spending. The inflation payments of 350 New Zealand dollars ($220) over three months begin in August and are targeted at the half of all adults who earn less than 70,000 New Zealand dollars ($44,000) per year. The extra money will help pay off the debts of the district authorities, rebuild three hospitals and boost medicine spending. The budget plan also included a boost of 660 million New Zealand dollars to defense spending over four years to cover the cost of depreciating assets.wftv.com
Asian stocks follow Wall St higher with China, Korea closed
Japan Financial Markets People walk by an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2022. Stock prices in Tokyo and Sydney followed Wall Street higher Wednesday while China, South Korea and Southeast Asian markets were closed for the Lunar New Year. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara) (Koji Sasahara)BEIJING — (AP) — Stock prices in Tokyo and Sydney followed Wall Street higher Wednesday while China, South Korea and Southeast Asian markets were closed for the Lunar New Year. Wall Street's benchmark S&P 500 index gained 0.7% on Tuesday, boosted by gains for energy and tech stocks in a late burst of buying. The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo rose 1.6% to 27,497.60 and Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 added 1.2% to 7,089.90.wftv.com
Extremist stayed in New Zealand despite immigration fraud
New Zealand Supermarket Terror Attack New Zealand's Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson speaks to media during a news conference at Parliament in Wellington, New Zealand, Sunday, Sept. 5, 2021. New details emerged Sunday about how an extremist inspired by the Islamic State group was able to remain in New Zealand despite his fraudulent refugee application and alarming behavior. (Hagen Hopkins/Pool Photo via AP) (Hagen Hopkins)WELLINGTON, New Zealand — (AP) — The Islamic State-inspired extremist who attacked shoppers in a New Zealand supermarket had been fighting deportation for immigration fraud, leaving the nation's leader expressing frustration at the process. Police first noticed Samsudeen's online support for terrorism in 2016 and by the following year, immigration agents knew he wanted to fly to Syria to join the Islamic State insurgency. “At the time of the terrorist attack, the offender's attempt to overturn the deportation decision was still ongoing,” Ardern said.wftv.com
New Zealand spending plan includes rebuilding Antarctic base
New Zealand Budget New Zealand Finance Minister Grant Robertson discusses the annual budget plan with media, economists and other groups in Wellington, New Zealand Thursday, May 20, 2021. New Zealand plans to rebuild its Antarctic base and spend billions more on welfare payments as part of a spending program aimed at lifting the economy out of a coronavirus slump. The budget plan includes $344 million New Zealand dollars ($247 million) to rebuild Scott Base in Antarctica, which has been used by scientists since it first built in 1957. Other new spending proposed in the budget includes a boost in benefits for welfare recipients and more money for health care. “In the face of this one-in-one-hundred-year shock, the New Zealand economy has proved to be remarkably resilient,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said.wftv.com
New Zealand's virus success unleashes runaway housing prices
New Zealand's government on Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021 made the first of several promised moves to rein in skyrocketing house prices by ordering the nation's Reserve Bank to consider the impact on housing when making decisions. (AP Photo/Mark Baker, File)WELLINGTON – New Zealand's success in battling the coronavirus has unleashed an unanticipated problem: skyrocketing house prices. When the pandemic first hit, most experts predicted house prices would fall. Ad“It's very pleasing to see movement in the right direction,” said Shamubeel Eaqub, an economist with Sense Partners who has written extensively about New Zealand's housing problems. But, he added, he expects house prices to “keep going up at a great rate of knots” without further strong intervention.
Final votes confirm New Zealand won't legalize marijuana
FILE - In this Oct. 17, 2020, file photo, New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern gestures as she gives her victory speech to Labour Party members at an event in Auckland, New Zealand. Ardern announced her new Cabinet lineup Monday, Nov. 2, 2020, after her liberal Labour Party won reelection in a landslide victory last month. (AP Photo/Mark Baker, File)
Asia Today: South Korea OKs single test for COVID-19 and flu
Women wearing face masks as a precaution against coronavirus get henna designs on their hands on the eve of Karva Chauth festival in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020. Even as India's overall coronavirus cases continue to fall, health officials say that New Delhi is in the grip of its third and worst wave of infections yet. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)
Asia Today: South Korea OKs single test for COVID-19 and flu
Even as India's overall coronavirus cases continue to fall, health officials say that New Delhi is in the grip of its third and worst wave of infections yet. The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency on Wednesday reported 118 new cases of COVID-19, most of them in the densely populated Seoul metropolitan area. In other developments in the Asia-Pacific region:— India’s capital reported a record high 6,725 new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, hit by its worst wave of coronavirus infections since March. New Delhi has averaged more than 5,200 cases a day this past week, a spike the Health Ministry attributes to the festival season. Authorities have also closed schools and key public offices, banned public gatherings and restricted public transport.
New Zealand investigating stock market cyber attacks
WELLINGTON New Zealands government and its foreign spy agency are getting involved after cyber attacks disrupted trading on the nations stock market several times this week. The attacks have affected the private company NZX which hosts the market, halting trading for up to several hours at a time. Finance Minister Grant Robertson said Friday that ministers had asked the Government Communications Security Bureau intelligence agency to help stop the attacks. Neither the NZX nor Robertson said if the attackers sought a ransom, as some have speculated. The security bureau declined to comment.
Fans savor return of stadium sport in virus-free New Zealand
Spectators react ahead of the Super Rugby Aotearoa rugby game between the Highlanders and Chiefs in Dunedin, New Zealand, Saturday, June 13, 2020. As countries try to reopen after lockdowns, the evening rugby match marked a milestone of sorts, and its importance wasnt lost on fans. Anyone whos a fan of live sport or even live music knows that if you're there, its totally different, he said. German exchange student Johanna Lindner said she'd never watched a rugby match before, and people back home were both curious and perhaps a little envious. As the final hooter sounded and the Highlanders kicked out the ball to win 28-27, the fans screamed and hugged.