Buzz from the Beehive – and we learn how Zoom helps Nanaia Mahuta stay in touch with the world (or Honiara, at least)

We were pleasantly surprised to catch up on the latest announcement from Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta – jointly issued with Defence Minister Peeni Henare – about the extension of the New Zealand Defence Force deployment to Solomon Islands.

This is being done as part of the Pacific-led Solomon Islands International Assistance Force.

It attests to the marvels of Zoom, because (a) Mahuta has been accused of being out touch with what’s happening in some spots of special interest to New Zealand, and (b) she was saying she has met with Solomon Islands Foreign Affairs and External Trade Minister Jeremiah Manele via Zoom

“… to discuss the depth of our cooperation as well as the extension of our deployment to Solomon Islands.”

A read-out of the Zoom call will (or should) be on the MFAT website here.

The announcement was one of two with implications (more or less) for this country’s links with the world. Continue reading “Buzz from the Beehive – and we learn how Zoom helps Nanaia Mahuta stay in touch with the world (or Honiara, at least)”

Buzz from the Beehive: Little is bound for Geneva while Nash is gunning for illegal timber traders

It wasn’t exactly the calm we expected before the tsunami of Budget initiatives that will be posted this afternoon along with documents that will record fiscal and economic forecasts and detailed estimates of appropriations.

Three announcements were made ahead of the Budget speech.

Partly there was an echo of yesterday’s news.

There was a travel announcement – while Export and Trade Growth Minister Damien O’Connor is headed for Thailand, Health Minister  Andrew Little will represent New Zealand at the first in-person World Health Assembly since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, to be held in Geneva, Switzerland.

And there was an announcement of an assault on crime. – whereas Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta was chuffed about legislation she believes “will help prevent serious criminal offending at sea”, Forestry Minister Stuart Nash has introduced legislation to reflect the government’s commitment to trade only in legally harvested timber. Continue reading “Buzz from the Beehive: Little is bound for Geneva while Nash is gunning for illegal timber traders”