Radio New Zealand - Thursday, 20th December 2012

This page lists items from RNZ that are available online. RNZ didn't start regularly putting both its audio and news content online until 2008. From 2002-2007 written news items (particularly from RNZ International) were placed online. You can access items prior to 2002 on the historic page.

This page features: Afternoons, At The Movies, Business News, CEISMIC, Checkpoint, Midday Report, Morning Report, News Stories, Nights, Nine To Noon, Our Changing World, Rural News, Te Manu Korihi, The Reading, Upbeat, You Me... Now!

Afternoons

Best Song Ever Written - When Smokey Sings
Sara Russell of Leeston has chosen "When Smokey Sings" by ABC. [more]

Your Place - Mahia Beach
Mahia Beach, located in Northern Hawke's Bay at the place where the picturesque Mahia Peninsula is joined to the rest of the North Island. As well as a beach store and and lotto shop, there is also a seaside market operating on Sundays. It's held next to the Boating and Fishing Clubhouse on the main reserve throughout the summer and sometimes on Wednesdays. [more]

Judith Durham
Fifty years ago The Seekers quartet performed every Monday night at the Treble Clef Coffee Lounge in Melbourne. They were all talented but the singer was something else, gifted with a perfect pitch voice that had everything. [more]

The Arts Report - The Harmonica Guy
Christchurch-based musician David Thorpe often tours as a multi-instrumentalist and one man band, but his greatest love affair has been with the humble harmonica. [more]

Southern Story for 20 December 2012 - Ukelele night
Katy Gosset visits New Brighton, a suburb that's been a little down on its luck after the quakes. But its local ukelele jam is still pulling in punters from all over town. Katy Gosset dropped in on the Friday night gig that keeps the community humming. [more]

Southern Story for 20 December 2012 - Ukulele Night
Katy Gosset visits New Brighton, a suburb that's been a little down on its luck after the quakes. But its local ukelele jam is still pulling in punters from all over town. Katy Gosset dropped in on the Friday night gig that keeps the community humming. [more]

Our Changing World - Snap of Chocolate
If you're eating good quality chocolate this Christmas, you've probably noticed that it makes a sharp, crisp sound when broken, otherwise known as "snap". While snapping chocolate is an indicator of quality, it is a rather subjective test, so at the University of Auckland, fourth-year engineering student Sharon Ngu and supervisor Bryony James have been trying see whether the snap of chocolate can be quantified. [more]

The Panel Pre-Show for 20 December 2012
Your feedback, and a preview of the guests and topics on The Panel. [more]

The Panel with Rosemary McLeod and Simon Pound (Part 1)
Topics - The Secretary of the Public Service Assocation, Brenda Pilott says the Education Minister Hekia Parata should follow the lead of the former Secretary of Education, and resign. At least one commentator today has complained about foreigners being parachuted into top roles in New Zealand without (what they consider to be) the necessary local knowledge and experience. [more]

The Panel with Rosemary McLeod and Simon Pound (Part 2)
Topics - if the Mayan prophecy is true, just how might it all end on Friday? Frightened neighbours are reported to have watched through their curtains as the body of a young man was dragged into a car and driven away after a shooting on a quiet West Auckland street. A court has heard that a man who "lost" $243,000 of investors' money didn't intend to "hoodwink" his friends. [more]

At The Movies

At The Movies for 20 December 2012
Simon Morris looks back on a busy year of movies, including Star of the Year, Trend of the Year and Comeback of the Year. And he looks forward to two Oscar hopefuls - Peter Jackson's The Hobbit - An Unexpected Journey, and Ang Lee's equally spectacular The Life of Pi. [more]

Business News

Morning Business for 20 December 2012
News from the business sector including a market report. [more]

Market Update for 20 December 2012
A brief update of movements in the financial sector. [more]

Midday Business News for 20 December 2012
Sky City Entertainment reluctantly sells its half stake in Christchurch casino. UBS is fined a record 1.5 billion US dollars for rate-rigging and the sharemarket rises a third of a percent. [more]

Evening Business for 20 December 2012
News from the business sector including a market report. [more]

Evening Business for 20 December 2012
The well-known Mad Butcher company will list on the New Zealand stock exchange next year, through a back door listing, after being bought by Veritas Investments, a tiny listed shell company, for 40 million dollars. [more]

CEISMIC

Hunt for Christchurch rebuild workers in Wellington
Christchurch employers have been in Wellington today signing up tradespeople to help rebuild the earthquake damaged city. [more]

Checkpoint

Checkpoint Top Stories for Thursday 20 December 2012
A 13 year old boy goes to jail for murder. Police target forced marriage and the economy slows to a crawl in second half of 2012. [more]

13 year old murderer jailed for 18 years
A 13 year old boy who shot his step grandfather's partner in the back of the head, while she did a puzzle, is tonight beginning an 18 year prison term for her murder. [more]

Coroner warns boaties they could be accused of manslaughter
A coroner has told an inquest into the death of a man who crashed on his seabiscuit - that the time is fast approaching when a boatie could be charged with manslaughter. [more]

A new plan to clamp down on forced marriages
Girls as young as 14 who are terrified of being forced into marriage are being told by the police they can get help without the family being prosecuted. [more]

Allegations of a drug smuggling ring at Sydney airport
To Australia now, where corrupt customs officials are being warned they'll be hunted down and locked up. [more]

Economy slows to a crawl in second half of 2012
More now on why the pace of economic growth has slowed to a crawl in the September quarter. [more]

Sports News for 20 December 2012
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

Salmon company and opponents disappointed with new approvals
No one appears to be happy with the Environmental Protection Authority's draft decision to allow four new salmon farms in the Marlborough region. [more]

Group opposed to more salmons farms
Danny Boulton is the Chairperson for "Sustain our Sounds", one the main groups opposed to the salmon farms, and he's with us. [more]

Politicians receive nearly 2 percent pay rise.
Politicians have received a wage rise of nearly two percent backdated to the beginning of July. [more]

South Auckland police using facebook to catch criminals
The police in South Auckland have turned to social media to find what they call their most wanted criminals in their area. [more]

Family's anguish as young killer jailed
One of New Zealand's youngest killers is beginning an 18 year jail term tonight for murdering his step grandfather's partner in what the judge called an impulsive and irrational act. [more]

More from an airport security expert
Mike Carmody is a former head of security with the Australian Federal Airports Corporation - he says the security setup at some of Australia's main airports is shameful. [more]

Downgrade not as bad as it could have been for council
A Christchurch business group is urging the city council to work more closely with the Government over the rebuild. [more]

Sports News for 20 December 2012
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

First major project in Christchurch rebuild
A three kilometre long park running along the Avon River is the first major redevelopment project to get underway in Christchurch next year. [more]

Researchers say pygmy right whale not right whale at all
A scientific argument over the origins of the rare pygmy right whale has been resolved - with the conclusion now that the little mammal is not a right whale at all. [more]

Labour party to reconsider Basin Reserve flyover
The Labour Party says it will revisit the plan to build a flyover around Wellington's Basin Reserve if it's elected to Government. [more]

Midday Report

Midday News for 20 December 2012
The latest growth figures are out and four new salmon farms are given the go ahead in the Marlborough Sounds. [more]

Midday Sports News for 20 December 2012
Already being criticised for a lack of attacking flair the Wellington Phoenix, will be without playmaker Paul Ifill for at least the next month of the A League football competition. [more]

Morning Report

Top Stories for Thursday 20 December 2012
Prime Minister continues to back Education Minister; Public sector union calls for Parata's resignation; UK surgeons work on NZ boy with brain tumour; Government 'not keeping prisoners safe'; Huffing signs not always obvious - coroner, and; Fiji dealing with aftermath of Cyclone Evan. [more]

Pacific News for 20 December 2012
The latest from the Pacific region. [more]

Principals president has mixed views on Longstone resignation
Some in the education sector say the Education Minister, Hekia Parata, should be the next to go after the Secretary for Education, Lesley Longstone, announced she was quitting after just a year in the job. [more]

Fast-track surgery creates 'monopoly' - doctors' union
A doctors' union says the high pay surgeons will get at a fast track centre for elective surgery due to open in Auckland in July is divisive and will effectively turn a public health centre into a private monopoly. [more]

Prime Minister continues to back Education Minister
While PM backs his minister, opposition parties say Ms Parata needs to accept responsibility for the failures in education, and should follow her Secretary of Education, Lesley Longstone, in falling on her sword. [more]

Public sector union calls for Parata's resignation
Public Service Association's Secretary Brenda Pilott speaks to Morning Report. [more]

Longstone lacked crucial understanding of NZ education sector
According to Teacher Education Professor John O'Neill at Massey University, the Secretary for Education Lesley Longstone lacked a crucial understanding of New Zealand's education sector. [more]

Surgeons work on boy with brain tumour
The son of a New Zealand woman in Britain has been sent for urgent brain surgery after a judge over-ruled her opposition to the operation. [more]

Government 'not keeping prisoners safe'
Prison reformers are accusing the Government of not doing enough to keep inmates safe from violent attacks, with jails becoming more dangerous because of the power of gang prisoners. [more]

Huffing signs not always obvious - coroner
The Rotorua coroner, Wallace Bain, says it's hard for families to pick up on signs their children are huffing - a practice the Drug Foundation likens to Russian roulette. [more]

Fiji, disease biggest threat in aftermath of Cyclone Evan
Authorities say water-borne illnesses are now the biggest threat as relief efforts kick into gear in Fiji, where thousands are now homeless. [more]

Sports News for 20 December 2012
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

Council votes for flyover rethink
Wellington City Councillor, Iona Pannett, is accusing the NZ Transport Agency of using threatening behaviour when it warned future investment in other transport initiatives will be put at risk if the council withdrew support for the basin reserve flyover. [more]

Peters criticises Lockwood Smith's London appointment
The New Zealand First leader, Winston Peters, has criticised the appointment of Parliament's Speaker Lockwood Smith as the next High Commissioner to London. [more]

Standard and Poor's downgrades CCC and CC Holdings
Standard and Poor's has downgraded the credit rating of Christchurch City Council and its subsidiary, Christchurch City Holdings. [more]

NZ scientist wins Einstein Medal
University of Canterbury Emeritus Professor Roy Kerr has become the first New Zealander to be awarded the prestigious Einstein Medal. The award recognises Professor Kerr's 1963 discovery of a solution to Einstein's gravitational field equations. [more]

Unpopular policy cost Education Secretary her job
Leaders in the education sector say say the Secretary for Education, Lesley Longstone, has taken the fall for the government's unpopular education policies. [more]

Afghan interpreter still seeking NZ help
The Afghan interpreter at the centre of controversy over resettlement to this country is still seeking answers from the New Zealand government. [more]

Justice reformer says prisons must change transgender policy
Former senior prison manager and now director of the organisation Rethinking Crime and Punishment, Kim Workman on Corrections' transgender policy. [more]

West Coasters fear downgrade of hospital services
The Government is fast-tracking the redevelopment of the decrepit and quake-prone Grey Base Hospital, which has suffered years of decay and uncertainty over its future. [more]

Sports News for 20 December 2012
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

Labour leader David Shearer says its been a tough but good year
Labour leader David Shearer sums up 2012. [more]

Doomsayers take shelter at 'upside down mountain' near Bugarach
The end of the world is nigh - according to some interpretations of Mayan calendar, but some say a tiny village in southwestern France will be saved. Elaine Cobb reports from Bugarach. [more]

Christmas wishes include safer swimming
Water Safety New Zealand has a simple wish this Christmas, no drownings. [more]

First ever count of little blue penguins
Department of Conservation staff, helped by volunteers, spent last night carrying out the first official little blue penguin census near the Port of Timaru. George Iles from the DoC speaks about the findings. [more]

First wild kaka born in a century in Wellington
A nest of kaka chicks has been spotted on the edge of Prince of Wales Park in Wellington. Wellington City Council's manager of reserves is Myfanwy Emeny talks about the discovery. [more]

Nights

Cane Toad Fast Food
Are cane toads now surviving by ingesting cowpats? - the danger of dung with president and founder of Kimberley Toad Busters, Lee Scott-Virtue. [more]

Science: Botany
Green-fingered and Threatened Plant Scientist Dr Peter de Lange on the great bio-mass that grows around us... New Zealand's own Christmas tree, the pohutakawa. [more]

Conundrum
Clue 7. [more]

Conundrum
Clue 8. [more]

Nine To Noon

Resignation of Education Ministry Chief Executive
Discussing the implications of this resignation for the education sector are: the Principal of Burnside Primary School, Matt Bateman; University of Auckland Associate Professor of Education, Peter O'Connor, and; the School Trustees Association's General Manager, Ray Newport. [more]

Hamish Gow - the Global Food Safety Partnership
Massey University's Hamish Gow is leading the Global Food Safety Partnership, whose backers and partners include the World Bank, the World Health Organisation, governments, and a raft of major food companies. [more]

UK Correspondent - Jon Dennis
The latest stories making headlines in the UK. [more]

Feature Guest - Justice Helen Winkelmann
Chief High Court Judge, Justice Helen Winkelmann, talks about her year-to-date. [more]

New Technology with Donald Clark
New technology cracks passwords in 6 hours; Google Zeitgest 2012, and; Websites to waste your time on these holidays. [more]

Parenting with Dr Pushpa Wood
Dr Pushpa Wood is the director of the New Zealand Centre for Personal Financial Education at Massey University. Today, Dr Wood talks about teaching children and young people about money and savings. [more]

Media with Gavin Ellis
The Leveson report, the Pollard review, and their recommendations; the beginning of end of the broadsheet in New Zealand; the end of Close Up and the serious current affair show; the TradeMe sale and media revenue, and; good journalism in 2012. [more]

Our Changing World

Chris Price - Parallax
Chris Price reads one of the poems she wrote as part of the Transit of Venus exchange with German poets [more]

Shark, Pumice & Shearwater Updates
An update on some of 2012's stories: tagged great white sharks, Kermadec pumice & fluttering shearwater translocation [more]

Horrocks Family Tree
Film academic Roger Horrocks explains his family's quest to find out if 17th-century astronomer Jeremiah Horrocks is a relative [more]

Hinemoana Baker - Taranga's Song
Hinemoana Baker reads her transit-inspired poem Taranga's Song [more]

A Portrait of Aotearoa
A metagenomics study looking at microbes in soils around New Zealand collected by secondary school students [more]

Snap of Chocolate
Bryony James and Sharon Ngu have been trying to see whether fracture toughness can be used to quantify the "snap" of chocolate [more]

Glenn Colquhoun - Dieffenbach
Glenn Colquhoun performs one of his poems about German naturalist Ernst Dieffenbach [more]

Rural News

Morning Rural News for 20 December 2012
News from the rural and farming sector. [more]

Midday Rural News for 20 December 2012
News from the rural and farming sectors. [more]

Te Manu Korihi

Te Manu Korihi News for 20 December 2012
Powhiri in Hawke's Bay to welcome home Ngati Kahungunu waka Te Matau A Maui after almost two years of Pacific voyaging; Taranaki based Parininihi ki Waitotara Corporation, expanding operations; Project in Hawke's Bay to increase population of patiki or black flounder, in the Ngaruroro awa near the township of Clive, an unqualified success. [more]

Te Manu Korihi News for 20 December 2012
Ngati Kahungunu Chairman, Ngahiwi Tomoana, says arrival in Napier this morning of iwi's waka Te Matau A Maui, a great occasion for whole tribe; Taranaki based Parininihi ki Waitotara Corporation, expanding operations; A group from Kohupatiki marae in Hawke's Bay who have spent the past year monitoring the number of black flounder and eels in the Ngaruroro awa near Clive, say the interest shown by scientists from Massey University has been a great confidence booster. [more]

Te Manu Korihi News for 20 December 2012
The Crown and a Waikato iwi have signed a Deed of Settlement that includes three-million-dollars in financial and commercial redress; The Chairman of Ngati Kahungunu says the knowledge gained by the crew of the iwi's waka Te Matau A Maui which returned home today to Napier, will be of benefit to all tribes; Te Matatini Society which hosts the national kapa haka festival, wants to see a 26 tonne carved mahau or porch front which will be unveiled at the 2013 competitions in Rotorua, used at other venues to showcase New Zealand's culture. [more]

Te Manu Korihi News for 20 December 2012
The Crown and a Waikato iwi have signed a Deed of Settlement that includes three-million-dollars in financial and commercial redress; The Chairman of Ngati Kahungunu says the knowledge gained by the crew of the iwi's waka Te Matau A Maui which returned home today to Napier, can be put to good use in Hawke's Bay; Te Matatini Society which hosts the national kapa haka festival, wants to see a 26 tonne carved mahau or porch front which will be unveiled at the 2013 competitions in Rotorua, used at other venues to showcase New Zealand's culture. [more]

The Reading

A Lame Excuse by Jane Seaford
Laura anticipates organising the big family Christmas celebration with little joy in her heart. Read by Deidre O’Connor. [more]

Upbeat

Christoph Maubach
Senior Lecturer in Music Education at Waikato University and organiser of Tui Tuituia International Music and Movement Education Conference taking place 7 - 10 January. [more]

Wendy Preston and Graciano Aganze
Director and Youth Leader of Mixit Youth Project preview their show 'Crossroads' at Auckland's Silo Park. [more]

You Me... Now!

Episode 167: Survivor Motuwero
The group is split up in a ferocious storm and The Endevour floats out to sea. [more]

News stories:

UK court quashes Hillsborough verdicts
British High Court judges have quashed accidental death verdicts returned after 96 Liverpool fans were crushed to death at the Hillsborough football stadium in 1989, and police have... [more]

NZ no.1 upset at World Squash Open
New Zealand's top women's squash player Joelle King has failed to reach the quarter-finals at the World Open in the Cayman Islands. The high-flying King, who's risen to... [more]

Sri Lanka say no Clarke would be a bonus
The Sri Lanka cricket coach Graham Ford admits it will be good for his side if Australia's world No.1-ranked batsman Michael Clarke is ruled out of the Boxing Day Test... [more]

Arsenal sign five rising stars long term
The future of the English premier league club Arsenal looks rosy now that the London club has secured long term contracts with five youngsters including the English midfielder... [more]

Road-riding LeBron waging 'vendetta' against himself
The American Basketball star LeBron James says he is engaged in a "vendetta" against himself as he pushes himself to reach his physical peak and win a second straight NBA... [more]

Peters criticises High Commissioner appointment
New Zealand First leader Winston Peters has criticised the appointment of Parliament's Speaker Lockwood Smith as New Zealand's next High Commissioner to the UK. [more]

Changes planned for West Coast health services
Specialist hospital services on the West Coast are set for a shake-up with the Government's announcement that it is fast-tracking the redevelopment of the ageing and quake-prone Grey Base Hospital in Greymouth. [more]

Huffing not straightforward to detect - toxicologist
A scientist at the National Poisons Centre says there's no straightforward detection system to tell whether a young person is huffing. [more]

Evan delays handover of Fiji draft constitution
Cyclone Evan has delayed the presentation of Fiji's draft constitution. The document was due to be handed to the President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau today, but will now be delivered tomorrow. [more]

Aid pledged to assist cyclone recovery in Samoa
Several countries have pledged to increase assistance to Samoa in the wake of Cyclone Evan. This has been confirmed as Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi chaired a National Disaster Council... [more]

NZ MP labels government stance on Papua "ironic"
The New Zealand Green Party MP says the government's stand on issues in Indonesia's Papua is ironic given its principled line when dealing with Fiji. Catherine Delahunty has been asking... [more]

Police probe into GCSB surveillance delayed
The police investigation into the Government Communications Security Bureau's surveillance of internet millionaire Kim Dotcom has been held up by legal proceedings in the High Court. [more]

SkyCity shares jump after deal on Adelaide casino
SkyCity Entertainment Group will spend more than $375 million upgrading its casino in Adelaide after reaching a deal with the South Australia government. [more]

Argosy issues $80m worth of new shares
Property landlord Argosy Property has successfully issued $80 million worth of new shares to investors. [more]

Air NZ says last month's patronage steady
Air New Zealand says its patronage remained steady last month. [more]

Reserve Bank currency trading rises
The Reserve Bank sold $NZ64 million in November, the largest amount since 2008. [more]

Current account deficit narrows to $2.5bn
The current account deficit - the difference between what the country spends and earns overseas - has narrowed due to a fall in foreign-owned companies' profits. [more]

Higher dairy prices not expected to increase payout
Expectations of higher global dairy prices next year are not expected to result in a higher payout to Fonterra's 10,500 farmers - at least not yet. [more]

Gang members jailed for drug offences
Two Rebels gang members who were lead players in a central North Island methamphetamine operation have been jailed by the High Court in Wellington. [more]

Patiki river project hailed as success
Organisers of a project to increase the population of patiki (black flounder) in a Hawke's Bay river say it's been an unqualified success. [more]

PKW invests $8 million in new dairy farm
Taranaki based Parininihi ki Waitotara Corporation is expanding its operations. [more]

MPI reviews dairy herd improvement regulations
The Ministry for Primary Industries is vetting regulations covering dairy herd improvement services to see whether they need updating. [more]

Wool prices soften overall
Prices softened overall in this week's wool sale, the last for the year. [more]

Foresters not pruning their trees as much
Forestry owners are increasingly deciding not to prune their trees as their value relative to unpruned trees drops. [more]

Transgender person sent to men's jail
A Whangarei transgender person seeking treatment to become a woman has been sent to a men's prison to do time despite her pleas. [more]

Elective surgery payments worry doctors' union
Fast-track surgery at a new centre in Auckland will be carried out by doctors paid thousands of dollars more than other specialists. [more]

Nesting kaka found in Wellington's town belt
Kaka have been found nesting in Wellington's town belt for the first time in a century. [more]

Tetuanui to stay in Tahiti jail amid Ravel probe
The judicial authorities in French Polynesia have rejected a bid by a suspect in a major corruption probe, Gaston Tetuanui, to be released from jail. Mr Tetuanui was arrested in... [more]

Australia says Fiji relationship growing with democratic moves
Australia's government says its relationship with Fiji is growing along with the progress Fiji is making towards democracy. Australia this week announced Margaret Twomey as its High Commissioner to Fiji,... [more]

Council moves to reopen Cathedral Square
Christchurch City Council is applying for resource consent to open up Cathedral Squarein the city's quake-damaged red zone. [more]

Arrest in Ashburton homicide case
Police investigating the death of an Ashburton woman have arrested and charged a youth with her murder. [more]

UBS fined for rigging Libor interest rate
Swiss bank UBS has agreed to pay $US1.5 billion to regulators in the United States, Britain and Switzerland for manipulating the key Libor interest rate. [more]

PM continues to back Education Minister
The Prime Minister continues to have complete confidence in Education Minister Hekia Parata despite renewed calls for her to be sacked. [more]

Tyson and De La Hoya among Nevada Hall of Fame inductees
Legendary fighters Mike Tyson, Oscar De La Hoya, "Sugar" Ray Leonard, Larry Holmes and Julio Cesar Chavez are among the inaugural inductees named to the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame. [more]

Black Sticks stars keen to cash in on Indian opportunity
One of the Black Sticks strikers who has been picked up by the new Hockey India League starting next month is hoping a compromise can be reached with the national... [more]

Australia win dramatic one day decider in Sydney
The New Zealand women's cricket team blew a great chance to share the Rose Bowl one-day series yesterday with Australia who won another high-scoring fourth game in Sydney by just... [more]

Sport: Kurukuru planning Japan tour
The Solomon Islands futsal team is hoping to capitalise on its recent success with a tour of Japan in the new year. The Kurukuru made history at last months World... [more]

Energy Mad dampens profit expectations
Energy efficient lightbulb maker Energy Mad warns its profit is likely to be as low as $100,000 due to setbacks to its sales amibitions in the US and Australia. [more]

Impasse remains over Black Sticks' participation in HIL
Negotiations are ongoing between Hockey New Zealand and the Hockey Players Association over a new deal that will allow the Black Sticks men's stars to compete in the lucrative Hockey... [more]

Sport: Solomon Warriors hoping to strengthen ahead of Oceania football debut
The Solomon Warriors say they're progressing well ahead of their Oceania Champions League debut next year. The Solomons Champs are still waiting to find out when the new domestic league... [more]

Flags flying at half mast to honour Hawaii senator
Flags are flying at half mast to honour Hawaii Senator Daniel Inouye who died this week aged 88. In a memorandum issued yesterday afternoon the American Samoa governor said in... [more]

Quake rebuild fraud allegations investigated
The Earthquake Commission is investigating two allegations of fraud in Christchurch involving overpricing and invoicing for work not done. [more]

Christchurch employers in capital seeking workers
A large group of Christchurch employers has been in Wellington recruiting workers to rebuild earthquake-damaged parts of their city. [more]

More smelter power price talks held
Meridian Energy says it has been talking during the past two weeks with managers at Southland's Tiwai Point smelter about the price it charges for electricity. [more]

Chelsea into League Cup semi-finals
Chelsea have beaten Championship side Leeds United 5-1 at Elland Road to reach the semi-finals of English football's League Cup. Chelsea, dumped out of the Champions League as holders and... [more]

Doha mall warned over flammable paint, court told
A trial in Doha has heard that a mall where 19 people died in a fire in May had been fined repeatedly for using highly flammable paint in its shop decorations. [more]

Vanuatu MP pleased with election petition judge swap
A Vanuatu opposition MP Willie Jimmy says he is grateful that the Chief Justice Vincent Lunabek agreed to disqualify himself from hearing his electoral petition against the candidacy of the... [more]

Rich countries told to look at Kiribati's climate change plight
The Commonwealth Secretary-General has appealed to governments of developed countries to travel to Kiribati to witness the country's vulnerability to climate change impacts. Kamalesh Sharma most recently visited Kiribati last... [more]

Australia's claim about suitable Nauru camp condition labelled absurd
A spokesperson for an Australian refugee advocacy group says government claims of suitable living conditions at its Nauru detention centre are absurd. The Refugee Action Coalition spokesperson Ian Rintoul says... [more]

Court upholds challenge to minister's zoning decision
The Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister has lost an attempt to appeal against a court ruling that he acted outside the law in fast-tracking a new housing development near Christchurch. [more]

Dotcom extradition hearing delayed again
Internet businessman Kim Dotcom will have to wait until August to find out whether he will be extradited after his hearing was delayed for a second time. [more]

Two-car crash on Kapiti coast highway
Two cars crashed on State Highway 1 at Te Horo, north of Wellington, on Thursday morning. [more]

Many South Africans won't get to see NZ test series
New Zealand's test cricket series against South Africa won't be shown live on free to air television in the Republic. South Africa's national broadcaster, the SABC, has decided it will... [more]

Hollande vows to apply French nuclear compensation law
The French President, Francois Hollande, says the law on compensating victims of the French nuclear weapons tests should be fully implemented. Mr Hollande made the comment during a visit in... [more]

Vanuatu viral outbreaks claims lives of three babies
Doctors in the Vanuatu capital, Port Vila, say a viral outbreak has already claimed the lives of three babies. The acting superintendent of Port Vila Central Hospital, Dr Rose Mary... [more]

Farmers aim double returns with finer wool
Romney sheep farmers tired of waiting for prices and demand to improve for cross-bred carpet wools are on a mission to change the wool their flocks produce. [more]

Afghan interpreter still seeking NZ help
An Afghan interpreter seriously injured in a deadly attack on New Zealand soldiers in August 2010 is still waiting to hear whether he will be offered resettlement in New Zealand. [more]

In seabed talks, Tahiti leaders push decolonisation bid
French Polynesian leaders have been in talks with the International Seabed Authority as part of a bid to get seabed deposits recognised as belonging to the territory's indigenous Maohi population. [more]

Wool growers' body close to launch target
A company asking wool growers for cash to promote their product and establish supply chains is well on the way to reaching the minimum capital target it set. [more]

Vanuatu challenge to PM's election still examined
The legal challenge against the eligibility of Vanuatu's Prime Minister to stand as a candidate in last October's election will proceed to the hearing stage. The opposition MP Willie Jimmy's... [more]

Samoa power generation troubled after Cyclone Evan
Samoa's power utility is negotiating to hire additional diesel generators because damage from Cyclone Evan cut power production by about 60 percent. The general manager of the Electric Power Company,... [more]

PNG's LNG approved in haste, says NGO
The co-author of an NGO report on the 19 billion US dollar Liquefied Natural Gas Project in Papua New Guinea says foreign governments shouldn't have signed off on the project. [more]

Areas of Fiji's resort-renowned island groups decimated by Evan
Islands in the part of Fiji most popular with tourists have reportedly been decimated by Tropical Cyclone Evan. More than 11,000 people are said to be in evacuation centres following... [more]

Australia confident about aid delivery to help Pacific women's cause
The Australian government says it is confident that aid directed at women in the region will be coordinated to have the best possible impact. Earlier this year, Australia announced a... [more]

Dairy effluent to fish food project scaled up
A Bay of Plenty regional council project which involves converting dairy effluent into fish food is being scaled up to farm trials. [more]

Coroner hearing into mud pool death
A coroner has heard it would be very difficult to achieve a common industry standard for safety measures with tourist attractions at the inquest into the death of a boy who fell into a thermal mud pool in Rotorua in 2010. [more]

PKW invests $8 million in new dairy farm
Taranaki maori farming corporation Parininihi ki Waitotara is expanding its operations. [more]

NZ's world champ surf lifesavers puzzled by funding cut
New Zealand's world champion surf lifesavers are up in arms over what their organisation's calling "a dramatic and unprecedented" government funding cut. A month after the Black Fins won the... [more]

Williamson does the damage on day four for Northern
An unbeaten century from Kane Williamson has led Northern Districts to its first Plunket Shield win of the domestic cricket season, by six wickets over Wellington. Northern comfortably chased down... [more]

All Blacks Sevens contracts revealed
The New Zealand Rugby Union has released its list of men's players contracted for the All Blacks Sevens over the next year, with seven newly contracted players. They are Wellington's... [more]

Knowledge gained by waka crew will benefit all iwi
Ngati Kahungunu's chairman says the knowledge gained by the crew of the iwi's waka Te Matau A Maui which returned home to Napier on Thursday, will be of benefit to all tribes. [more]

Ngati Koroki Kahukura sign Deed of Settlement
The Crown and a Waikato iwi have signed a Deed of Settlement that includes $3 million in financial and commercial redress. [more]

Business confidence falls in December - survey
Business confidence has fallen in December, after rising slightly in November. [more]

New Zealand share market up
The benchmark NZX50 index closed up 52 points, or 1.3%, to close at 4075, with a turnover of $164 million on Thursday. [more]

Te Matatini Society wants mahau to showcase NZ's culture
Te Matatini Society which hosts the national kapa haka festival, wants to see a 26 tonne carved mahau or porch front which will be unveiled at the 2013 competitions in Rotorua, used at other venues to showcase New Zealand's culture. [more]

Quake rebuild drives modest rise in economic activity
The rebuilding of Canterbury has driven a modest rise in economic activity, offsetting falls in both manufacturing and agriculture. [more]

Vanuatu agriculture minister wants rice on market by 2015
Vanuatu's new Agriculture Minister, Kalfau Moli, says he wants to see local rice on sale in Luganville by 2015 because dependence on imports is not good for the economy. Mr... [more]

Solomons' provincial premier downplays concerns about off-shore mining
The Premier of Solomon Islands Temotu Province says the benefits of a deal to permit a foreign mining company to extract underwater minerals from its waters outweigh the concerns. The... [more]

Elsham Papua report significant increase in conflicts and violence
The human rights monitoring group ELSHAM Papua says events of the past 16 months in Indonesia's Papua indicate the region has reverted back to being a Zone of Military Operations. [more]

Hawaii will lose clout with loss of two long serving senators
A spokesperson for Hawaii's East-West Centre says the state is in a challenging position as it looks to replace its two long serving senators in Washington. The Director of External... [more]

Wellington CEO to go
The long-serving chief executive of Wellington City Council has lost his job after councillors decided not to renew his contract. [more]

Samoa business leader encourages tourists to keep coming
Samoa's Chamber of Commerce says it is still encouraging tourists to visit Samoa despite the damage caused to some businesses by the recent cyclone. The Chamber's President, Sami Leota, says... [more]

Fiji inmates cleaning up cyclone-hit Lautoka
Fiji's prison inmates are helping soldiers help clean up Lautoka, the western division town that suffered most from the onslaught of Tropical Cyclone Evan earlier this week. Timoci Tuiqali, who... [more]

Inmates cleaning up cyclone-hit Lautoka
Fiji's prison inmates are helping soldiers help clean up Lautoka, the western division town that suffered most from the onslaught of Tropical Cyclone Evan earlier this week. Timoci Tuiqali, who... [more]

Coroner warns operators after boating death
The mother of a man who was accidentally killed by his friend driving a speed-boat says it's time for a complete overhaul of boating rules. [more]

Pay rise for politicians
Politicians have received a wage rise of nearly 2% backdated to the beginning of July. [more]

New salmon farms approved for Marlborough Sounds
New Zealand King Salmon has been given approval to build four more salmon farms in the Marlborough Sounds. [more]

Police find Facebook helps find criminals
Police in South Auckland say the use of social media to find wanted criminals in their area is proving to be invaluable. [more]

Christchurch employers seek trades in Wellington
Christchurch employers were in Wellington on Thursday looking for tradespeople to help rebuild earthquake-damaged parts of their city. [more]

Teen sentenced to 18 years for murder
A teenager has been sentenced to 18 years jail for the murder of his step-grandfather's partner in North Taranaki. [more]

Agency downgrades Christchurch credit rating
Christchurch City Council is confident its debt levels won't spiral out of control and lead to a further credit downgrade. [more]

Economy grows more slowly than expected
Economic growth was slower than expected in the most recent quarter, newly released figures show. [more]

One dead SH2 after car collides with truck
One person is dead after a car collided with a truck at notorious blackspot at Mangatawhiri in Franklin District. [more]

Three missing girls found safe and well
Three small girls missing for more than 8 hours on Thursday in Hamilton have been found after a massive search involving police, land search and rescue, community patrols and extended family. [more]