New Zealand

A self-proclaimed prominent medical academic has been made bankrupt after trying to take legal action over the Whakaari/White Island disaster, Stuff reported. Dr. Miles Roger Wislang was made bankrupt after a hearing in the High Court at Dunedin last month. The application was brought by White Island Tours Ltd. over unpaid legal costs of $62,240.50. The costs arose after he applied for a judicial review application regarding the Whaakari eruption of Dec. 9, 2019, which claimed 21 lives. He argued no visits to the island should have been permitted while the mountain was at alert level two.
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New Zealand’s central bank said it will reduce monetary stimulus by ceasing quantitative easing, a surprise move that sent the currency higher as traders priced in an interest-rate increase as early as August, Bloomberg News reported. The Reserve Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee, led by Governor Adrian Orr, on Wednesday held the official cash rate at 0.25%, but said that it will halt bond buying under its Large Scale Asset Purchase program by July 23. The statement omitted a previous reference to the need for considerable time and patience to achieve its inflation and employment goals.
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New Zealand's closed borders have helped keep COVID-19 out of the Pacific nation, but a critical shortage of migrant labour is now fueling protests among businesses and workers struggling with a staffing crisis, Reuters reported. About 2,000 eateries stopped service and turned off lights across on Tuesday and are planning other stop work events as part of a two-month campaign to draw the government's attention to the severe shortages in skilled labour. The labour crunch comes after New Zealand sealed its border in March last year in response to the raging coronavirus pandemic.
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A controversial Christchurch, New Zealand-based businessman, who was once a director of a Headhunters-linked debt collecting firm, has declared himself bankrupt, Stuff reported. Richard Logan Freeman, a former heavyweight boxer and racing car driver, was put into bankruptcy on June 21. It’s understood he declared himself insolvent after the High Court awarded $350,000 in damages against him earlier this year for making defamatory remarks about earthquake advocate Bryan Staples.
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Nomura Holdings Inc. announced business partnerships at home, Australia and New Zealand as Japan’s biggest brokerage seeks to move past a $2.9 billion hit from the implosion of Archegos Capital Management, Bloomberg News reported. Nomura signed an agreement with three regional Japanese banks to set up a joint venture to provide remote financial consulting services. It also struck up an alliance with investment bank Jarden Securities Ltd. to provide services such as stock and bond underwriting for clients in Australia and New Zealand, it said in separate statements on Monday.
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New Zealand will allow quarantine-free visits by Australians from April 19, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Tuesday, creating a "travel bubble" for the neighbouring nations which have closed borders to the rest of the world to eradicate COVID-19, Nikkei Asia reported. Though most Australian states have allowed quarantine-free visits from New Zealanders for months, New Zealand has continued mandatory quarantine from its neighbour, citing concern about small COVID-19 outbreaks there.
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New Zealand’s biggest bond rally in a year set the tone for moves across other debt markets Wednesday following declines in U.S. Treasury yields, Bloomberg News reported. Kiwi yields posted their biggest drop since the coronavirus wreaked havoc in March last year as traders curbed wagers for interest-rate hikes in the wake of government measures to cool housing prices. Bonds in Australia and emerging Asian economies also advanced while German bund futures signaled a firmer start.
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New Zealand’s government took aim at property speculators with a suite of new measures to tackle runaway house prices and prevent the formation of a “dangerous” bubble, Bloomberg News reported. The government will remove tax incentives for investors to make speculation less lucrative and unlock more land to increase housing supply, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Tuesday. The moves come as surging house prices keep first-time buyers and people on lower incomes out of the market, raising concerns about growing societal inequality.

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The New Zealand Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has suspended the certificates of Pacific Aerospace, after it told the regulator it is insolvent, but operators of aircraft made by the New Zealand aircraft manufacturer may continue flying, Smart Aviation reported. The CAA says the aircraft manufacturer notified it on 10 February that it was insolvent, “and as a result, we suspended Pacific Aerospace’s certificates which had previously allowed it to design, manufacture and maintain aircraft,” the CAA says in a statement.
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