Putting New Zealanders First

New Zealand First is the third largest party in the New Zealand Parliament. The Party was formed in 1993 to represent those New Zealanders concerned about the social and economic direction of our country, and who were seeking pragmatic, common-sense representation in Parliament.

Following the 2017 General Election, the Party retained 9 seats in the House of Representatives and formed a Coalition Government with the New Zealand Labour Party. Party Leader, Rt Hon Winston Peters, became Deputy Prime Minister of New Zealand and the Party secured three other Cabinet positions and an Undersecretary role.

At the core of New Zealand First's policies are our "Fifteen Fundamental Principles", which emphasise accountable and transparent government, common-sense social and economic policy, and the placing of the interests of New Zealand, and New Zealanders, at the forefront of Government decision-making.

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Latest News

PGF funding could transform Gisborne company into “beacon of employment” in two years

A new Provincial Growth Fund investment could create about 80 new jobs in Gisborne over the next two years, turning a local small business into a “beacon of employment” in the process. Regional Economic Development Parliamentary Under-Secretary Fletcher Tabuteau said the PGF’s Te Ara Mahi funding stream would provide $1.6m to two projects to train new employees in Gisborne and the wider East Coast. “This PGF funding gives Tairawhiti people access to opportunities and meaningful work through the support of locally-led initiatives. We know this is essential for our regions to thrive and grow,” Mr Tabuteau said. The funding includes $731,311.40 for a two-year civic infrastructure workforce development programme for 24 new employees (targeting potential workers from Tolaga Bay up to Hicks Bay) and 15 existing employees, run by Parata Contracting. In addition, a two-year horticulture training programme run by Four Seasons in Gisborne, would receive $940,000 to train 56 full-time employees — 31 in year one, and another 19 the year after. “These projects exemplify the purpose of Te Ara Mahi — to give regions the capability to support local people with skills, training and employment,” Mr Tabuteau said. “These projects will make a significant difference to the futures of people and businesses in Tairawhiti. I’m proud we are backing locally-led programmes which tackle challenges in this region head on, and support the priorities carved out by people in this community,” he added.     http://gisborneherald.co.nz/localnews/4344514-135/pgf-boost-for-field-services-big

Shane Jones hits back at activists upset with immigration changes

New Zealand First MP Shane Jones has hit back at those who are upset over a change in approach to partnership visas. There has been a specific government directive to stop waiving requirements such as couples needing to have lived together for 12 months - a test Indian couples who have had arranged marriages can't meet. "I would just say to the activists from the Indian community, tame down your rhetoric, you have no legitimate expectations in my view to bring your whole village to New Zealand and if you don't like it and you're threatening to go home - catch the next flight home." There were a "significant" number of Kiwi-Indians that were affected because arranged marriages were so common in their community, according to the Auckland Indian Association. New Zealand First leader Winston Peters already defended his Party's influence in the recent changes to immigration. "Has New Zealand First had an influence on trying to tidy up the quality of information on which the immigration department relies? The answer is profoundly yes." On arranged marriages, Mr Peters said: It was simple, you're either a partner under New Zealand law, or you're not". Mr Peters has previously told RNZ the tightening of that scheme was thanks to New Zealand First's pressure at the Cabinet table, an assertion not denied by the Prime Minister.   https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/401595/arranged-marriages-caught-up-in-immigration-policy-changes

Next steps in Northland line upgrade underway

The North Auckland Line rejuvenation kicks off with teams surveying the rail corridor and Northland construction contractors are showing interest in the project. KiwiRail provided an industry briefing for Northland contracting and construction companies about future work opportunities on rejuvenating Northland’s rail lines. The briefing session in Whangarei was held to ensure local civil construction contractors - large and small - were aware of the work that was coming, says KiwiRail Chief Operating Officer Capital Projects David Gordon. “The Government has made a significant investment in the North Auckland Line with $94.8 million of funding from the Provincial Growth Fund for much needed maintenance." “Where possible, we want to use local firms for the work. There will be a mix of larger and smaller jobs making up the overall programme of works, so we wanted to ensure the local industry was aware of the opportunities not just for large companies, but also for smaller scale contractors," Mr Gordon said. “Survey teams have already begun gathering detailed ground and asset information to be used to help design bridge replacements and plan essential tunnel maintenance." "Northland’s railway lines are underused at the moment because of their condition. The NAL is around 100 years old, is currently mothballed north of Kauri (above Whangarei) and the whole line has been in a state of ‘managed decline’ until its future was determined," the COO added. “The survey work is a major step in turning that around.”     https://www.kiwirail.co.nz/media/new-media-article-2/  

“NZ First prove once again they are more than a sideshow”

Journalist Andrew Dickens, reporting from the 2019 New Zealand First Conference, states that the Party once again proved “they are more than a sideshow”. In his op-ed article for NewstalkZB, Mr Dickens said he has always been an admirer of the Party, saying they are “a true centrist party”. “[NZ First are] Slightly conservative, slightly socialist, not liberal but still with a heart towards the less well off - particularly if they’re elderly or come from Northland,” he added. Mr Dickens notes of how the Party mitigated many of Labour’s policies, and said that the Party would do the same if they had gone with the National Party instead. The journalist also negated claims that NZ First was a one-man band, mostly dominated by its leader Winston Peters, and predicting that the Party would fold once he retires. “But Shane Jones seems there for the long haul. Ron Mark is still rattling in his cage. Tracey Martin is a determined woman. And Jenny Marcroft is slowly mitigating the baby boomer conservatism and bringing the party into the present,” Mr Dickens wrote. The journalist also told of NZ First’s youth wing taking a powerful position on pill testing during the Conference, successfully influencing the membership to support festival pill testing. With what he witnessed; Mr Dickens argued that NZ First is certainly more than just a sideshow. “The question has always been is New Zealand First a sideshow or the real deal. Well, they’re much more than a sideshow as they’ve proved time and time again and probably will into the future.”     https://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/on-air/andrew-dickens-monday-afternoons/opinion/andrew-dickens-nz-first-prove-once-again-they-are-more-than-a-sideshow/

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