Table of Contents
The New Zealand Official Yearbook mirrors New Zealand and its people. It describes the physical resources of the country and their use. It enumerates statistics of the population, their health and education, their employment and their production, their trade and their national finances, their wages and their savings, their housing and food consumption, their means of communication and their international relationships. Supplementary material gives other social, administrative, and legislative information.
There is real value in combining such a breadth of information in one volume. Thus the Official Yearbook is established as a standard reference work both within and beyond New Zealand.
As a series, Official Yearbooks are a rich source of material for research workers and students. The yearly record becomes a survey of both growth and change. Every endeavour is made to give comprehensive accurate information as clearly as possible within the limits of space. Each section is progressively revised and the emphasis varies with economic and social developments.
In this issue the protection of the environment is touched upon in an enlarged section on Land Use and Resource Development.
As a special article there is a centennial survey of the activities of the Ministry of Works since the Vogel era of development in 1871.
The photographic section features accomplishments by the Ministry of Works in road, rail, and electricity development and construction of public buildings.
Additional and more recent detail on many subjects may be obtained from publications of the Department of Statistics. These are listed towards the end of this Yearbook and are available from Government Bookshops.
J. P. Lewin
Department of Statistics,
30 July 1971.
The interpretation of the symbols used in the tables throughout this publication is as follows:
|- nil or zero||...not applicable|
|..figures not available||- - amount too small to be expressed|
|not yet available — space left blank||x revised|
All values are shown in New Zealand currency, unless another currency is specifically stated. The pound (£) in issues previous to 1967 has been superseded by the dollar ($), two of which are equivalent to the previous pound. The cent is one-hundredth part of the dollar and is equivalent to 1.2 pence.
|1 yard||= 0.914 metre|
|1 inch||= 25.4 millimetres|
|1 mile||= 1.609 kilometres|
|1 square foot||= 929.03 square centimetres|
|1 square yard||= 0.836 square metre|
|1 acre||= 0.405 hectare|
|1 square mile||= 2.59 square kilometres|
|1 pound||= 0.454 kilograms|
|1 hundredweight (cwt)||= 112 lb = 50.8 kilograms|
|°Celsius (centigrade)||= 5/8(°Fahrenheit-32)|
|1 cubic foot||= 0.028 cubic metre|
|1 cubic yard||= 0.765 cubic metre|
|1 gallon||= 4.546 litres|
|1 bushel||= 36.37 litres|
|1 long ton||= 1.016 metric tons|
|1 short ton||= 0.907 metric ton|
On occasions figures are rounded off to the nearest thousand or some other convenient unit. This may result in a total disagreeing slightly with the total of the individual items as shown in tables. Where figures are rounded the unit is in general expressed in words below the table headings, but where space does not allow this the unit may be shown as 000 for thousand, etc.
Figures for fiscal years ended 31 March (the fiscal year) are indicated in the text and headings of tables; otherwise figures are mainly for calendar years.
|bd ft||board feet|
|cu ft||cubic feet|
|n.e.i.||not elsewhere included|
|n.e.c.||not elsewhere classified|
|sq||ft square feet|
|sup||ft super feet|
Table of Contents
GEOGRAPHICAL POSITION—The islands of New Zealand have been shaped from the projecting crests of earth folds which rise as broad ridges from the floor of the South Pacific Ocean, 1,000 miles east of the continent of Australia. There are three main islands—North, South, and Stewart separated only by relatively narrow straits—with adjacent islets and a small group called Chatham Islands, 530 statute miles to the east of Lyttelton. Dating from 1842 the administrative boundaries of New Zealand, including the minor islands, extend from 33 degrees to 53 degrees south latitude and from 162 degrees east longitude to 173 degrees west longitude. Inhabited outlying minor islands are Raoul Island in the Kermadec Group, 620 statute miles north-east of the Bay of Islands, and Campbell Island, 370 statute miles south of Stewart Island.
New Zealand is also responsible for the administration of two island groups in the Southwest Pacific—Niue and the Tokelau Islands. These are incorporated within the boundaries of New Zealand. Niue is 1,540 statute miles north-east of Auckland, while the Tokelau Islands are 704 statute miles further north. The territorial area reaches to within 8 degrees of the Equator.
The Ross Dependency, some 1,500 statute miles to the south, has been under New Zealand's jurisdiction since 1923 and comprises the sector of the Antarctic continent between 160 degrees east and 150 degrees west longitude, together with the islands lying between those degrees of longitude and south of latitude 60 degrees south.
The administrative area of New Zealand can be classified as follows. In this Yearbook, in general, New Zealand refers to the group of islands shown in (a) only.
|Area in Square Miles|
*Situated off North Island.
†Situated off South Island.
‡26.87 million hectares.
|(a) New Zealand:|
|North Island.. .. .. .. .. .. ..||44,281|
|South Island.. .. .. .. .. .. ..||58,093|
|Stewart Island .. .. .. .. .. ..||670|
|Chatham Islands .. .. .. .. .. ..||372|
|Kermadec Islands* .. .. .. .. ..||13|
|Campbell Island† .. .. .. .. ..||44|
|Uninhabited (areas in parentheses) .. .. .. ..||263|
|Three Kings* (3); Snares† (1); Solander† (1/2); Antipodes† (24); Bounty† (1/2); Auckland† (234).|
|(b) Overseas territories—|
|Tokelau Islands, comprised of—|
|Fakaofo Island, Nukunonu Island, Atafu Island.. .. ..||4|
|Niue .. .. .. .. .. ..||100|
|(c) Ross Dependency .. .. .. ..||(Estimated) 160,000|
The 16 Cook Islands achieved a status of self-government in free association with New Zealand on 4 August 1965; more detail is given in Section 38 of this Yearbook.
GEOGRAPHICAL FEATURES: Coastline—Since the combined length of the North and South Islands extends just over a thousand miles, and since the width of neither Island exceeds 280 miles at its broadest point, New Zealand possesses a very lengthy coastline in proportion to its area. With the exception of the low-lying North Auckland Peninsula, the New Zealand land mass lies, along a south-westerly and north-easterly axis, parallel to the direction of its mountain chains.
In the North Island, Whangarei, Auckland, Tauranga and Wellington are natural harbours which have been developed into ports for extensive use by overseas ships. At Napier and Gisborne artificial harbours have been made. On the east coast of the North Auckland Peninsula several other deep and sheltered harbours exist, but production from the hinterland is limited. In the South Island the Marlborough Sounds and the West Coast Sounds form perfect land-locked harbours, but owing to their situations and to the rugged nature of the terrain they have—with the exception of Queen Charlotte Sound—little or no commercial utility. By dredging and by breakwater construction, ports capable of accommodating overseas vessels have been formed in Lyttelton, Otago, and Bluff Harbours and on the coast at Timaru. On the west coast of both Islands the strong ocean drifts and high seas cause shoaling at river mouths and harbour entrances, although an overseas port has been developed at New Plymouth, while on the east coast of the South Island similar circumstances prevail, due to the large quantities of shingle brought down by the rivers being spread along the coast by ocean currents.
Mountains—The mountainous nature of New Zealand is one of its most striking physical characteristics, less than one-quarter of the land surface lying below the 650 ft contour. In the North Island the higher mountains occupy approximately one-tenth of the surface; but, with the exception of the four volcanic peaks of Egmont (8,260 ft), Ruapehu (9,175 ft), Ngauruhoe (7,515 ft), and Tongariro (6,458 ft), they do not exceed an altitude of 6,000 ft. Of these four volcanoes only the first named can be classed as dormant. Ruapehu and Ngauruhoe have been particularly active from time to time. Other volcanoes include Mount Tarawera and White Island, each of which has, upon one occasion within historical times, erupted with disastrous consequences. Closely connected with the volcanic system are the multitudinous hot springs and geysers.
The mountain system of the North Island runs generally in a south-west direction, parallel to the coast, from East Cape to Turakirae Head, and includes the following ranges from the north: Raukumara, Huiarau, Ruahine, Tararua, and Rimutaka. This chain is flanked on the west between the Huiarau and Ruahine by the Ahimanawa, Kaweka, and Kaimanawa Ranges, while west of the Kaimanawa is the National Park volcanic group comprising Mounts Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe, and Tongariro. The Hauhangaroa and Rangitoto Ranges run in a northerly direction from the National Park group. In the east the Moehau Range parallels the length of the Coromandel Peninsula. Mount Egmont forms the only area above 4,000 ft on the west coast of this Island.
The South Island is much more mountainous than the North. Along almost the entire length of the Island runs the massive chain known as the Southern Alps, which attains its greatest height in Mount Cook (12,349 ft), while no fewer than 16 peaks exceed 10,000 ft. West and north-west of the main portion of the Southern Alps are the Victoria, Brunner, and Lyell Ranges and the Tasman Mountains, the Victoria Range being flanked by the Paparoa Range. To the north run the St. Arnaud and Richmond Ranges, while to the north-east are the Spenser Mountains and the Kaikoura and Seaward Kaikoura Ranges, the two latter ranges running parallel to the east coast. The south portion of the Southern Alps breaks up into a miscellany of ranges dominating the mountainous Fiord and north-western Southland regions.
There are at least 223 named peaks of 7,500 ft or more in altitude. Below is a list of the peaks restricted to the four largest volcanic cones in the North Island and to mountains of a minimum height of 9,000 ft in the South Island.
|Mountain or Peak||Height (Feet)|
|Ruapehu .. ..||9,175|
|Egmont .. ..||8,260|
|Ngauruhoe .. ..||7,515|
|Tongariro .. ..||6,458|
|Alarm .. ..||9,400|
|Tasman .. ..||11,475|
|Dampier .. ..||11,287|
|Silberhorn .. ..||10,757|
|Lendenfeldt .. ..||10,503|
|Mt. Hicks (St. David's Dome) .. ..||10,443|
|Malte Brun .. ..||10,421|
|Torres .. ..||10,376|
|Sefton .. ..||10,359|
|Haast .. ..||10,295|
|Elie de Beaumont ..||10,200|
|Douglas Peak ..||10,107|
|La Perouse .. ..||10,101|
|Haidinger .. ..||10,059|
|Minarets .. ..||10,058|
|Aspiring .. ..||9,960|
|Hamilton .. ..||9,915|
|Glacier Peak ..||9,865|
|De la Beche .. ..||9,817|
|Aiguilles Rouges ..||9,731|
|Nazomi .. ..||9,716|
|Darwin .. ..||9,715|
|Chudleigh .. ..||9,686|
|Annan .. ..||9,667|
|Low .. ..||9,653|
|Haeckel .. ..||9,649|
|Goldsmith .. ..||9,532|
|Conway Peak ..||9,519|
|Bristol Top .. ..||9,508|
|Walter .. ..||9,507|
|Grey .. ..||9,490|
|Green .. ..||9,305|
|Hutton .. ..||9,297|
|D'Archiac .. ..||9,279|
|Ronald Adair ..||9,276|
|Hochstetter Dome ..||9,258|
|Earnslaw .. ..||9,261|
|Nathan .. ..||9,200|
|Barnicoat .. ..||9,183|
|Sibbald .. ..||9,181|
|Spenser .. ..||9,167|
|The Footstool ..||9,073|
|Rudolf .. ..||9,039|
|The Dwarf .. ..||9,025|
|Tutoko .. ..||9,042|
Glaciers—In keeping with the dimensions of the mountain system, New Zealand possesses, in the South Island, a glacial system of some magnitude. Of the glaciers the largest is the Tasman, which, with others of comparable size, rises in the more elevated area surrounding Mount Cook. Flowing down the eastern slope of the range, the Tasman Glacier has a length of 18 miles and a width of 1 1/4 miles. In common with other glaciers on the eastern slope, of which the more important are the Murchison (11 miles), the Mueller (8 miles), the Godley (8 miles), and the Hooker (7 1/4 miles), its rate of flow is slow, while its terminal face is at an altitude of somewhat over 2,000 ft. On the western slope of the range, owing to the greater snow precipitation, the glaciers are more numerous and descend to lower levels, while the steeper slope gives them a more rapid rate of flow. The two largest of these are the Fox and the Franz Josef, with lengths of 9 3/4 miles and 8 1/2 miles respectively, and terminal faces at altitudes of 670 ft and 690 ft.
Rivers—New Zealand rivers, owing to the high relief of the country, are mostly swift-flowing and difficult to navigate. As sources of hydro-electric power the rivers are of considerable importance, since their rapid rate of flow and dependable volume of water make them eminently suitable for this purpose. The Waikato and the Rangitaiki in the North Island and the Waitaki, Cobb, Clutha, and Waipori in the South are used for major hydro-electric schemes.
Following is a list of the more important rivers. For purposes of uniformity, the length of a river is taken to be the distance from the mouth to the farthest point in the system, whether this should happen to bear the same name or that of an affluent, and is inclusive of the estimated course of a river flowing into and emerging from any lake in the system.
|*Cook Strait is defined as follows: northern limit is a line between northern points of Stephens Island and Kapiti Island: southern limit is a line between Cape Palliser and Cape Campbell.|
|Flowing into the Pacific Ocean—|
|Piako.. .. .. ..||56|
|Waihou (or Thames) .. ..||109|
|Rangitaiki .. .. ..||120|
|Whakatane .. .. ..||65|
|Waiapu (from source, Mata River)..||75|
|Waipaoa (from source, Waipapa Stream) .. .. ..||70|
|Wairoa (from source, Hangaroa River).. .. .. ..||85|
|Mohaka (from source, Taharua River) .. .. ..||107|
|Ngaruroro .. .. ..||96|
|Tukituki .. .. ..||70|
|Flowing into Cook Strait*—|
|Ruamahanga .. .. ..||77|
|Hutt .. .. .. ..||35|
|Flowing into the Tasman Sea—|
|Otaki .. .. ..||30|
|Manawatu .. .. ..||113|
|Rangitikei .. .. ..||150|
|Turakina .. .. ..||85|
|Whangaehu .. .. ..||100|
|Wanganui .. .. ..||180|
|Waitotara .. .. ..||67|
|Patea .. .. ..||89|
|Waitara .. .. ..||61|
|Mokau .. .. ..||98|
|Waikato (from source, Upper Waikato River) .. ..||264|
|Wairoa (from source, Waiotu Stream) .. .. ..||82|
|Hokianga (from source, Waihou River) .. .. ..||45|
|Flowing into Cook Strait—|
|Pelorus .. .. ..||40|
|Wairau .. .. ..||105|
|Awatere .. .. ..||78|
|Flowing into the Pacific Ocean—|
|Clarence .. .. ..||130|
|Conway .. .. ..||30|
|Waiau-uha (or Waiau) .. ..||105|
|Hurunui .. .. ..||86|
|Waipara .. .. ..||40|
|Ashley .. .. ..||60|
|Waimakariri .. .. ..||100|
|Selwyn .. .. ..||59|
|Rakaia .. .. ..||90|
|Ashburton .. .. ..||56|
|Rangitata (from source, Clyde River) .. .. ..||75|
|Opihi .. .. .. ..||50|
|Pareora .. .. ..||35|
|Waihao .. .. ..||40|
|Waitaki (from source, Hopkins River) .. .. ..||130|
|Kakanui .. .. ..||40|
|Shag ... .. .. ..||45|
|Taieri .. .. .. ..||179|
|Clutha (from source, Makarora River) .. .. ..||200|
|Flowing into Foveaux Strait—|
|Mataura .. .. ..||149|
|Oreti .. .. .. ..||126|
|Aparima (Jacobs River) ..||70|
|Waiau (from source, Clinton River)||135|
|Flowing into the Tasman Sea—|
|Hollyford .. .. ..||47|
|Cascade .. .. ..||40|
|Arawhata .. .. ..||42|
|Haast .. .. ..||40|
|Karangarua .. .. ..||23|
|Cook .. .. ..||20|
|Waiho (from source, Callery River)||20|
|Whataroa .. .. ..||32|
|Wanganui .. .. ..||35|
|Waitaha .. .. ..||25|
|Hokitika .. .. ..||40|
|Arahura .. .. ..||35|
|Taramakau .. .. ..||50|
|Grey .. .. ..||75|
|Buller (from source, Travers River)||110|
|Mokihinui .. .. ..||35|
|Karamea .. .. ..||50|
|Heaphy .. .. ..||22|
|Aorere (from source, Spee River)..||45|
|Takaka (from source, Cobb River)||45|
|Motueka .. .. ..||67|
|Waimea (from source, Wai-iti River)||30|
The discovery in 1861 that the beds of rivers in the South Island contained extensive deposits of alluvial gold was of considerable importance in the early economic development of the country.
With the very successful acclimatisation of freshwater fish, notably trout, many rivers now provide exceptionally fine fishing.
Lakes—In considering New Zealand's numerous lakes a distinction can be made, especially from the scenic viewpoint, between the lakes of the two Islands. Surrounded by extremely rugged country the larger lakes of the South Island are distinguished by the grandeur of their alpine settings, while some of the larger ones of the North Island, situated on a volcanic plateau, have their own particular beauty. As reservoirs the lakes of both Islands are of vital importance for the maintenance of the rivers and streams draining them and as a means of flood prevention. More especially is this the case where hydro-electric schemes are involved, Lakes Waikaremoana and Taupo in the North Island, and Lakes Coleridge, Pukaki, Tekapo, Wanaka, Hawea, and Wakatipu in the South Island, being of particular significance in this respect. A series of narrow man-made lakes have been produced in connection with hydro-electric development along some of the rivers. In 1965 Lake Benmore, New Zealand's largest artificial lake, was created. It lies on the Waitaki River in North Otago and covers 30 1/2 square miles in area and consists of two arms, the main arm being 18 1/2 miles in length and the Ahuriri Arm 11 1/2 miles in length.
Some particulars of the more important lakes are given in the following table.
|Lake||Length, in Miles||Greatest Breadth, in Miles||Area, in Square Miles||Drainage Area, in Square Miles||Approximate Volume of Discharge, in Cubic Feet per Second||Maximum Height Above Sea Level in Feet (Range in Brackets)*||Greatest Depth, in Feet|
|*The range in lake levels is not available for all lakes.|
|Rotorua||7 1/2||6||31||203||..||920 (2)||84|
|Tarawera||7||5 1/2||14||72||273||981 (2)||285|
|Rotoaira||3||1 3/4||5||50||240||1,852 (3)||..|
|Rotoma||3 1/4||2 1/4||4 1/2||12||..||1,036 (6)||..|
|Okareka||1 1/2||1 1/4||1 1/4||8||..||1,160 (4)||..|
|Rotomahana||4||1 3/4||3 1/2||27||..||1,116 (22)||..|
|Rerewhakaitu||2 1/2||1 3/4||3||..||..||1,441 (4)||..|
|Rotokakahi||2 1/2||1||1 3/4||11||40||1,298||..|
|Maraetai||4 1/2||1/2||1 1/2||2,390||6,730||618||..|
|Rotoiti||5 1/2||1 3/4||4||71||440||2,020 (6)||250|
|Brunner||5 1/2||5 1/2||15||160||..||280||357|
|Sumner||6||1 1/2||5 1/2||130||..||..||..|
|Tekapo||11||3 1/2||37||550||3,060||2,347 (25)||620|
|Pukaki||9 1/2||5||32||523||4,520||1,640 (30)||..|
|Te Anau||38||6||133||1,275||9,730||686 (15)||906|
|Hauroko||22||1 1/2||27 1/2||225||1,100||513 (6)||..|
|Ahuriri Arm||111/2||2 3/4||30 1/2||3,000||12,000||1,181||315|
|Main Arm||18 1/2|
GEOLOGY—The islands of New Zealand are part of the unstable circum-Pacific Mobile Belt. This is a region where volcanoes are active and where the earth's crust has long been buckling and breaking at a geologically rapid rate. The interplay, in the past, of earth movements and erosion has made the sedimentary rocks that cover almost three-quarters of New Zealand. Land areas that the earth movements have raised have been attacked by erosion, and the sand, mud, shingle, and other debris thus formed has been carried away to the sea, where it has accumulated in great thicknesses to form rocks such as sandstone, mudstone, greywacke, and conglomerate; the shells and other skeletons of sea creatures have accumulated to form thick layers of limestone. Many of the sedimentary rocks are in distinct layers called strata. Earth movements have later raised them above the sea to form land, and the strata are in many places tilted and folded by pressure. Seas have advanced and retreated over New Zealand many times, and these sedimentary rocks represent almost every geological period since the Cambrian (see Time Scale). Their age is revealed by the shells, foraminifera, and other fossils that they contain.
As well as sedimentary rocks, and volcanic rocks of various ages, New Zealand incorporates in its complex structure schist, gneiss, marble and other metamorphic rocks, and granite, diorite, gabbro, serpentine, and other intrusive igneous rocks. Most of these metamorphic and intrusive rocks are hundreds of millions of years old. They were formed at depth in the earth's crust early in New Zealand's history, in the “roots” of ancient mountain ranges, long ago destroyed, and are visible at the land surface today only because erosion has removed thousands of feet thickness of other rocks that once covered them. The metamorphic rocks developed when huge, elongated sea basins (geosynclines) were formed, in which tens of thousands of feet thickness of sediments accumulated. When these geosynclines were slowly compressed during major mountain-building episodes the deeper sediments were subjected to great pressure and shearing stress, which caused new minerals and structures to develop, changing the sediments into metamorphic rocks. The granites and other intrusive rocks are coarsely crystalline, and are usually considered to have intruded into the outer crust in a molten state during mountain building; some, however may be the products of an intense metamorphism of sediments.
|Eras||Periods||Approximate Time Since Period Began (Years)|
|Cenozoic||Holocene (Recent)||Quaternary||10 thousand|
Geological History—Evidence of the earliest-known events in New Zealand's history is given by ancient rocks in Nelson, Westland, and Fiordland that were formed in the early Paleozoic era, perhaps as long as 600 million years ago (some in Westland may be older). They include thick, geosynclinal sedimentary rocks. This suggests that a large land mass existed at that time to yield the great volume of sediments, but little has been deduced about its shape or position.
The history of the later part of the Paleozoic era, and the Mesozoic era, is rather better understood. For a vast span of time from the Carboniferous period—probably until the early Cretaceous period—an extensive geosyncline occupied the New Zealand region. At first, during much of late Paleozoic time, huge quantities of submarine lava and volcanic tuff were included in the materials that accumulated in the geosyncline, but in the later Permian and Mesozoic times the sediments were mainly sand and mud, derived probably from some land west of present New Zealand; they were compacted into hard greywacke (a type of sandstone) and argillite (hard, dark mudstone).
In the early Cretaceous period one of the main mountain-building episodes in New Zealand's history took place. Although geosynclinal sedimentation continued through the Cretaceous period in eastern New Zealand, the geosyncline elsewhere was compressed, and the sediments were intensely crumpled and broken and raised above the sea, probably forming a large, mountainous landmass. Some of the geosynclinal deposits, now exposed over much of Otago, alpine Westland, and parts of Marlborough Sounds, were metamorphosed into schist and gneiss by the tremendous deforming pressures to which the geosyncline was subjected.
The time that has elapsed since the intense folding of the strata in the New Zealand Geosyncline in the mid-Cretaceous period may be considered as the later geological history of this country, embracing roughly 100 million years.
During the early part of this late history, erosion slowly wore down the mountains that had risen, producing a land of low relief. Over these worn-down stumps of the Mesozoic mountains the sea gradually advanced, beginning its transgression earlier in some areas than in others. In the early Cretaceous period it began to submerge land in the region of present North Auckland and the eastern margins of the North and South Islands, and thick deposits of mudstone and sandstone accumulated in some parts of these areas. At the close of the Mesozoic era, and in the very early Tertiary, land became so reduced in size and relief that little sediment was formed, and only comparatively thin deposits of fine bentonitic and sulphurous muds, and fine, white, foraminiferal limestone accumulated. In some areas New Zealand's main coal deposits accumulated, in swamps on the surface of the old land. These became buried by marine deposits as the sea continued its transgression in the Eocene period.
By the Oligocene period, most of the land was submerged, and in shallow waters free of land sediments thick deposits of shell and foraminiferal limestone accumulated. (Scattered, remnant patches of this Oligocene limestone furnish most of New Zealand's cement and agricultural lime.)
After the Oligocene submergence earth movements became more vigorous; many ridges rose from the sea as islands, and sank or were worn down again; sea basins formed and rapidly filled with sediments. New Zealand's late Tertiary environment has been described as follows: “The pattern of folds, welts and troughs that developed was on a finer scale than in the Mesozoic ... the land moved up and down as a series of narrow, short, interfingering or branching folds. ... we can think of Tertiary New Zealand as an archipelago. ...a kind of writhing of part of the mobile Pacific margins seems to have gone on ...”* The thick deposits of soft, grey mudstone and sandstone that now make up large areas of the North Island, and some parts of South Island, are the deposits that accumulated rapidly in the many sea basins, large and small, that developed in the later Tertiary.
Very late in the Cenozoic era—in the Pliocene and Pleistocene periods—one of the greatest episodes of mountain building in New Zealand's history took place. Earth movements became intense, and slowly pushed up the Southern Alps and other main mountain chains, and determined the general shape and size of the present islands of New Zealand. Much of the movement during this mountain building period (the Kaikoura Orogeny) took the form of displacement of blocks of the earth's crust along fractures called faults. The total movements of the earth blocks adjacent to major faults amounted to thousands of feet. It must have been achieved very slowly, probably by innumerable small movements, each of a few inches or feet. The blocks adjacent to “transcurrent” faults moved not only vertically but also laterally along the faults. The New Zealand landscape today in some regions shows well preserved tilted fault blocks bounded by fault-scarps—steep faces hundreds or even thousands of feet high. Fault movements continue to the present day, and have accompanied several major earthquakes of the past century. Many minor but revealing landscape features such as scarplets, fault ponds, and shutter ridges show where movement has been occurring in recent centuries.
*“New Zealand Biogeography” by Charles A. Fleming. Tuatara Vol. 10, No. 2, June 1962, pp. 53-108.
Erosion during this time has eaten into the major landscape forms that the earth movements have built, carving the detailed landscape pattern of peaks, ridges, valleys, and gorges, and has built up alluvial plains, shingle fans, and other construction forms. At the coast waves have driven back the headlands and built beaches, spits, and bars. The Pleistocene period was the time of the Ice Age, and in the high mountains of the South Island glaciers carved deep valleys and carried huge loads of rock, dumping them as moraines. The late Pleistocene glaciers carved the fiords of Fiordland and the basins occupied by most South Island lakes; there were small glaciers also on Ruapehu, where remnants survive, and on Mount Egmont and the Tararua Range.
Volcanic activity of the past few million years has played an important part in making the rocks and shaping the landscape of parts of the central and northern North Island. Banks Peninsula, a twin volcanic dome in Canterbury, achieved much of its growth then. The largest volcanic outpourings of late geological times in New Zealand have been in the region between Tongariro National Park and the Bay of Plenty Coast: andesite lava, scoria, and ash were erupted in the Pleistocene period and later to build the huge volcanoes, Ruapehu, Tongariro, and Ngauruhoe. More than 2,000 cubic miles of molten rhyolitic magma was erupted in the form of ignimbrite, pumice, and rhyolite lava, building up the Volcanic Plateau.
Geological Maps—The geological maps show the present distribution of major rock groups in New Zealand, brought about by the events and processes that have been summarised in previous paragraphs.
Older Rocks—Much of the late Cretaceous and Tertiary sedimentary rock that once must have covered a large part of the South Island has been worn off by erosion since the Kaikoura Orogeny, and the “undermass” of old rocks has been exposed.
The oldest of these rocks lie to the west. Fiordland is made up mainly of metamorphic diorite, granite, and coarse schist, gneiss, and marble, with Ordovician graptolite-bearing slates in its south-west extremity; greywackes and argillites of possibly pre-Cambrian age occur in Westland and south-west Nelson, and further north in Nelson there are large areas of complexly folded Cambrian and Ordovician sedimentary and metamorphic rocks. Large granitic masses, hundreds of square miles in area, occur in Westland, Nelson, and Stewart Island.
These ancient rocks terminate with an abrupt boundary (which shows clearly even on this small-scale map) extending from Milford Sound along the western margin of the Southern Alps. This boundary is the Alpine Fault, a great fracture that divides the South Island into two areas of dissimilar geological structure: to the west and in Fiordland, are the granites and other ancient rocks just described; to the east, the undermass rocks are predominantly the sedimentary and marine volcanic rocks of the New Zealand Geosyncline and their metamorphosed forms of later Paleozoic and Mesozoic age. From Marlborough, through Canterbury to North Otago, the map shows an almost continuous expanse of these rocks; here they are mainly sparsely fossiliferous greywackes and argillite strata of Triassic and Jurassic age. On the western flanks of the Southern Alps, and in Otago, these sedimentary rocks merge gradually with schist and gneiss. Those of the Southern Alps show on the map as a very narrow belt, cut off by the Alpine Fault, but the southern schists form a belt some 60 miles wide extending for about 150 miles across Otago. To the south, also, this schist mass merges gradually with sedimentary rocks of the New Zealand Geosyncline, here of Permian age. These strata, mainly tuffs and tuffaceous greywackes forming a belt that stretches across Southland, are the northern limb of a major downfold or syncline; Triassic and Jurassic strata occupy its core, making up much hill country of Southland. The southern limb rocks include much marine volcanic rock, and in the core of the syncline in western Southland a belt of dunite and serpentine is intruded and is well exposed in the Olivine and Red Hill ranges.
A sequence of rocks very like that of Southland is found also in eastern Nelson. Here, fossiliferous Triassic rocks and Permian sedimentary and volcanic rocks closely resembling those of Southland are found, and a belt of dunite and serpentine (the Nelson “mineral belt”) intrudes them. It has been suggested that the Nelson and Southland rocks, which terminate abruptly at the Alpine Fault and its continuation as the Wairau Fault, were originally joined, and have been displaced some 300 miles by lateral movement at the fault.
Younger Rocks—On the eastern side of the South Island, upper Cretaceous and Tertiary strata survive only as small patches, the remnants of a once fairly complete cover of younger rocks. Thick geosynclinal Cretaceous strata are found in the Clarence and Awatere Valleys of Marlborough, but elsewhere in the eastern South Island the upper Cretaceous and lower Tertiary strata are thin. They include foraminiferal limestone, greensands, sandstones, and other shell deposits formed during slow transgression by the sea. Oligocene limestone remnants mark the period of maximum transgression.
On the western side of the South Island the younger rocks are more widespread, and include some thick sequences that were formed in rapidly sinking basins. The oldest are the coal measures, mainly Eocene in age. They are overlain in some areas by thick lower Tertiary marine strata. In Southland, thick Tertiary strata occupy the Waiau Syncline, between Lake Te Anau and Foveaux Strait.
The map shows some large areas of Pleistocene Recent terrestrial deposits in the South Island. The largest forms the Canterbury Plains, and consists of old shingle deposits of unknown thickness washed from the Southern Alps during the Pleistocene glaciation. Others occupy the Moutere depression of Nelson, and form Southland Plains, and intermontane basins, such as the McKenzie Plains, in the main mountain chains. Thick Pleistocene moraines form the main surface rocks of South Westland.
Banks Peninsula is the only large mass of young volcanic rocks in the South Island; there are smaller areas at Timaru, Oamaru, and in the Dunedin district.
Older Rocks—Unlike the South Island, the North Island has no large expanses of granite or metamorphic rocks: the undermass rocks are almost wholly complexly folded and faulted greywackes and argillites of the New Zealand Geosyncline, predominantly Mesozoic in age.
The largest expanse of these hard rocks forms the main mountain backbone of the North Island, extending from Cook Strait to the East Cape area. Smaller areas of them are exposed between north Taranaki and Auckland. They include the richly fossiliferous strata of the Kawhia Syncline, a major downfold of the undermass rocks.
In North Auckland, deeply weathered undermass rocks, in part of Permian age, form low hill country in the east, particularly between Whangaroa and Whangarei harbours.
Younger Rocks—Over most of the North Island the older rocks are hidden by Cretaceous, Tertiary and Quaternary sedimentary rocks and by young volcanic rocks. In some areas the younger sedimentary rocks are thin and patchy; in others they are many thousands of feet thick over hundreds of square miles. The bulk of them are poorly consolidated sandstones, and grey mudstones to which the colloquial name “papa rock” is often applied.
The main areas with thick sequences of these young strata are the Taranaki - Wanganui -Rangitikei district, and the region east of the main ranges, including most of the Poverty Bay, Hawke's Bay, and Wairarapa districts. Intensive oil prospecting of recent years has greatly added to knowledge of the structures.
In the Taranaki-Wanganui-Rangitikei district the strata dip gently south, so that increasingly young rocks are exposed in this direction, the lower Tertiary being seen only in the north. However, recent oil bores drilled to depths of about 13,000 ft at Kapuni in Taranaki, passed through a full sequence of strata from Pleistocene through all Tertiary stages, finally reaching Eocene coal measures.
In the eastern North Island the structure of the younger rocks is much more complex than in the western area. Upper Cretaceous strata are followed by Tertiary in many sedimentary basins large and small, with many unconformities. The southern part of the region is broken by many transcurrent faults, and hard lower Cretaceous greywacke piercement bodies project from the younger rocks.
Younger rocks of South Auckland do not form such large basins as those just described. The oldest of these strata are the Eocene coal measures of the Waikato region. Upper Cretaceous strata, mainly mudstones, are the most widespread of the younger rocks of North Auckland.
Young volcanic rocks are widespread in the North Island. The largest area of them is the Central Volcanic District: north of the three great andesite volcanoes, Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe, and Tongariro, lies the “volcanic plateau”, an expanse of some 10,000 square miles made up of several thousand cubic miles of ignimbrite, rhyolite lava, and pumice. This is one of the largest and youngest accumulations of acid volcanic rocks in the world. Most of it has been erupted in late Pliocene and Pleistocene times. The belt of most recent activity in the Central Volcanic District is known as the Taupo Volcanic Zone; it contains all this country's active volcanoes, many inactive ones, and all the geysers and boiling springs.
Mount Egmont is a huge, conical, andesite volcano, with the remnants of two other volcanic cones nearby; all are of Pleistocene age. In the Waikato there are eroded Pleistocene cones of approximately basic andesite composition. The largest is Pirongia, some 3,000 ft high. Auckland city and the area immediately to the south has been the scene of many eruptions of basalt lava and scoria in late Pleistocene and Holocene times; and many small scoria cones can be seen in the locality. Late Tertiary and Quaternary basaltic eruptions in North Auckland have built lava plateaus and many young cones.
A Descriptive Atlas of New Zealand contains geological maps of New Zealand and summaries of New Zealand's geology and landscape development. New Zealand Geological Survey Bulletin 66, The Geological Map of New Zealand, 1:2,000,000, is a lengthier summary with a more detailed geological map and cross sections.
EARTHQUAKES: Geophysical Background—Earthquakes are geographically associated with active volcanoes and with major earth movements such as mountain building; these types of disturbance are confined, for the most part, to certain limited regions of the world. Such disturbed regions, of which New Zealand is one, are evidently the site of some kind of development affecting the outer shell of the Earth. Little is yet known about the internal processes that give rise to these geophysical disturbances, nor are the relations connecting them fully understood.
Formerly earthquakes were believed to be caused by volcanic activity, but it is now recognised that volcanic earthquakes are restricted to small shocks in the immediate vicinity of the volcanism. In New Zealand, tremors of this kind are experienced in the zone of active volcanism that extends from Mount Ruapehu to White Island.
In some places geological faulting at the surface gives visible evidence that a major earth movement has occurred. Occasionally movement on a fault has been observed to occur simultaneously with an earthquake in the same vicinity. New Zealand provided one of the earliest examples of this to become generally known, when movement took place on the Wairarapa Fault at the time of the great Wellington earthquake of 1855. Such events as this have led to the idea that earthquakes in general are caused by fault movements, but it has proved difficult to find convincing evidence in support of this theory. It is noteworthy that there seems to be little earthquake activity along much of the Alpine Fault, which has been traced for 300 miles from Milford Sound to Lake Rotoiti and is classed by geologists as one of the largest and most active faults in the world. The nature of the connection between earthquakes and faulting is still somewhat obscure.
The great majority of the world's earthquakes occur at depths of less than 40 miles, and in many earthquake zones there are no shocks at any greater depth. A moderate number of New Zealand earthquakes are classed as intermediate in depth, i.e., originating at between 40 miles and 190 miles deep. The two deepest New Zealand earthquakes recorded so far occurred four and a half minutes apart on 23 March 1960, with a common focus 370 miles deep under North Taranaki, about 80 miles shallower than the deepest earthquake known.
It is difficult to compare the degree of earthquake activity in New Zealand with that in other regions because of the many differences that arise in earthquake type and mode of occurrence. New Zealand and California are often regarded as roughly similar, with an activity very much less than, for example, Japan or Chile.
Regional Distribution—There are two separate regions of earthquake activity in New Zealand. The larger northern region may be roughly defined as lying between latitude 36 1/2 °S and 43 1/2°S. It thus includes the northern half of the South Island, and all the North Island apart from the North Auckland peninsula; but the area from Kaipara Harbour to the lower Waikato River should be excluded. The southern active region lies to the west of longitude 169 1/2 °E, and incorporates Southland, western Otago, and southern Westland. Earthquakes have only occasionally been located in the parts of New Zealand lying outside these two regions.
Within the active regions the occurrence of shallow earthquakes is widely scattered. There has been a tendency, however, for the larger shallow earthquakes to lie towards the Pacific side of the northern active region and towards the Tasman side of the southern active region. Earthquakes with deeper foci are mostly confined to a narrow belt in the northern region, extending from the Bay of Plenty south-westwards to Tasman Bay.
The historical record is too brief to support a quantitative assessment of the frequency with which one might expect earthquakes to be felt at a given intensity in various parts of New Zealand. Considering the distances to which major earthquakes can be effective, in relation to the size of New Zealand, it would be imprudent to regard any part of the country as permanently exempt from the possibility of earthquake damage.
Outside the active regions there are many areas, however, where no damaging intensity has actually been experienced in historical times. Moreover, since the major shallow earthquakes on record have been rather widely distributed within the active regions, there appears to be no particular area of markedly intense seismicity.
The Hawke's Bay earthquake of 3 February 1931 resulted directly or indirectly in 255 deaths. The total of deaths that have been recorded as due to other earthquakes since 1848 is 32, of which three resulted from the Inangahua earthquake of 1968.
Seismological Observatory—Earthquake recorders are operated continuously at the following stations by the Seismological Observatory, Wellington: Apia and Afiamalu (Western Samoa); Suva (Fiji); Rarotonga (Cook Islands); Raoul Island (Kermadecs); Cape Reinga, Onerahi, Auckland, East Cape, Karapiro, Wairakei, Gisborne, Tuai, Tarata, Chateau, Taradale, Castlepoint, Mangahao, and Wellington (North Island); Cobb, Kaimata, Christchurch, Gebbies Pass, Mount John, Milford Sound, Oamaru, Roxburgh, Monowai, and Waipapa Point (South Island); Chatham Islands; Campbell Island; Vanda and Scott Base (Antarctica). The Naval Research Laboratory, Auckland, operates a station on Great Barrier Island, the records from which are analysed at the Seismological Observatory. The installations at the following stations include instruments for recording distant earthquakes: Afiamalu, Rarotonga, Wellington, Roxburgh and Scott Base. At the Pacific and Antarctic stations preliminary readings are made locally and notified by radiogram. The analysis of records from all stations is carried out at the Observatory in Wellington.
The analysis involves using observations from stations in other countries as well as those from the local network, and the Observatory likewise contributes data to the international seismological agencies about distant earthquakes as well as large local ones. Details of tremors felt in New Zealand are supplied to the public and the press. In the study of felt earthquakes the instrumental results are augmented by “felt reports”; these are supplied by a large number of voluntary observers throughout New Zealand in response to a standard questionnaire issued by the Observatory.
Earthquake data are used by the Observatory for studying the fundamental characteristics of the Earth's crust in New Zealand, Antarctica and the neighbouring oceanic regions, and also for contributing to geophysical knowledge of the Earth's interior.
Earthquakes during 1970—Earthquakes did not cause any appreciable damage in 1970. The most noteworthy event was the swarm of small earthquakes, centred near Puru in the Coromandel Peninsula, that began in August and persisted for more than a month. There were several hundred shocks, many of which were felt in the immediate vicinity of the epicentres, and were responsible for minor damage to goods and a few weak structures. A magnitude 4 1/2 shock just after noon on 13 August damaged some old buildings on sandy water-saturated foundations in Thames. The largest of the series, on 27 August, had a magnitude of 4 3/4, and was also felt on the Hauraki Plains and in parts of suburban Auckland. At 4.18 p.m. on 18 December, a shallow earthquake of magnitude 5 3/4 centred between the lower reaches of the Manawatu and Rangitikei Rivers attracted moderate attention in the southern part of the North Island and about Cook Strait; in the Hutt Valley, electric power was briefly interrupted, and telephone communication between Wellington and the Wairarapa was broken; no material damage was reported; there were several small aftershocks. On 28 July the largest event, a submarine shock of about magnitude 6 1/4 centred near East Cape, was felt no further south than Wairoa. A magnitude 5.8 shock at a depth of 75 miles with an epicentre east of Lake Taupo occurred on 12 March and was more widely felt throughout the central North Island. The North Canterbury shocks of 1 May and 14 August were felt from southern Nelson to Westland and Banks Peninsula, and a shock on 13 June, 70 miles beneath Lake Te Anau, affected southern Westland, Southland, and Otago. Other shocks of magnitude 5 or more occurred near Pahiatua on February 14, and in Fiordland on 15 September.
A shock of magnitude 4 3/4 occurred on 29 September on the Chatham Rise, about 100 miles east of Christchurch; it was felt on Banks Peninsula and in the city. On 23 November small shocks were reported from Timaru and Oamaru.
WEATHER INFORMATION—The collection of weather information and the provision of weather forecasts and climatic data for diverse interests in aviation, shipping, agriculture, Government Departments and the general public are functions of the New Zealand Meteorological Service. By arrangement with the administrations concerned the Service performs similar functions for British territories in the Pacific.
Weather reports for use in forecasting are made at about 140 places within New Zealand and 50 in Pacific islands and collected by telegraph and radio, along with measurements of winds at upper levels made at nine radio wind stations and of temperatures made at eight radiosonde stations. Daily observations are made for climatological purposes at about 250 places in New Zealand and 80 in the islands. Rainfall measurements are made at a total of about 2,000 places within New Zealand and 270 outside the country.
Detailed climatological statistics are published annually by the New Zealand Meteorological Service in the Meteorological Observations, in Rainfall Observations, and in Fiji Annual Meteorological Summary. Current statistics appear monthly in the New Zealand Gazette and in the Fiji Gazette.
CLIMATE—Situated between 34°S and 47°S the main islands lie within the road belt of strong westerly winds which encircles the hemisphere south of about latitude 35°S. Just to the north is the high-pressure ridge of the subtropics from which barometric pressure decreases southwards over New Zealand to the deep low-pressure trough located near latitude 70°S.
The weather pattern from day to day is dominated by a succession of anticyclones, separated by troughs of low pressure, which pass more or less regularly from west to east across the Australia - Tasman Sea - New Zealand area and beyond. In this region there is no semi-permanent anti-cyclone such as those found in similar latitudes over the Indian Ocean and eastern Pacific Ocean respectively. The troughs normally have a northwest to southwest orientation and are associated with deep depressions centred far to the south. A typical weather sequence commences with a low-pressure trough approaching from the west. Freshening northwesterly winds prevail with increasing cloud, followed by rain for a period during which winds may reach gale force. The passage of the trough, with its associated cold front, is accompanied by a change to cold southwesterly or southerly winds and showery weather, occasionally with some hail and thunder. Barometers then rise with the approach of the next anticyclone from the west. Winds moderate and fair weather prevails for a few days as the anticyclone moves across the country.
While the sequence just described is very common the situation is frequently much more complex. The troughs are very unstable systems where depressions readily form, some of which develop into vigorous storms that may pass over New Zealand at any time of the year. Occasionally in summer a cyclonic storm of tropical origin passes over or near New Zealand accompanied by gales and heavy rain affecting mainly northern and eastern districts of the North Island. The anticyclones vary in size, intensity, and rate of movement. Their centres, on the average, follow a track across the North Island but individual centres may pass either north or south of the country, the more northerly tracks being favoured in spring and the southerly tracks in autumn. At times when little development occurs within the troughs the anticyclones follow each other at intervals of about 6-7 days.
The other main factors which influence the climate of New Zealand are, first, its position in the midst of a vast ocean, and second, the shape and topography of the country itself.
Australia, the nearest continent, is 1,000 miles to the west and Antarctica is 1,400 miles to the south. Hot air masses from the interior of Australia in summer, or freezing air masses from the Antarctic, which occasionally reach New Zealand, retain little of their original character after their long ocean passage. Thus, there is an absence of extreme variations of temperature. On the other hand, since abundant supplies of moisture are supplied by evaporation from the oceans, and depressions are frequent and vigorous, the average precipitation is high.
The chain of high mountains, which extends from south-west to north-east through the length of the country, rises as a formidable barrier in the path of the prevailing westerly winds. The effect is to produce much sharper climatic contrasts from west to east than in the north-south direction. In some inland areas of the South Island just east of the mountains the climate is distinctly continental in character, despite the fact that no part of New Zealand is more than 80 miles from the sea.
Winds—Winds from a westerly quarter prevail in all seasons, with a general tendency to increase in strength from north to south. However, considerable local modifications to the general air flow occur during its passage across the mountainous terrain. Approaching the main ranges the flow from the west turns towards the north-east and on descending on the eastern side swings towards the south-east. This results in an increased number of south-westerlies in Westland and a predominance of north-westerlies in inland districts of Otago and Canterbury, where strong gales from this quarter occur at times in the late spring and summer. Daytime sea breezes usually extend from the coast inland for 20 miles or more during periods of settled weather in summer. On the Canterbury coast the wind comes most frequently from the north-east, partly because there is a persistent sea breeze from this quarter, but south of Dunedin south-westerlies predominate. Cook Strait, the only substantial gap in the main mountain chain, acts as a natural funnel for the air flow and is a particularly windy locality afflicted by gales from the south-east as well as the north-west. This “funnel” effect is also in evidence about Foveaux Strait. North of Taranaki the general air flow is more from the south-west, and there is a noticeable reduction in windiness in the summer.
An indication of the variation in the frequency of strong winds from summer to winter, and in different parts of the country, is given in the next table. These were all obtained by the use of Dines pressure-tube anemometers at well exposed sites.
|Station||Average Number of Days With Gusts Reaching||Years of Data|
|40 m.p.h. or More||60 m.p.h. or More|
|NOTE—These are all aerodromes, with the exception of Auckland (Mechanics Bay) and Wellington (Kelburn).|
|Auckland (Mechanics Bay)||20||29||49||0.9||1.6||2.5||24|
Rainfall—The distribution of rainfall is mainly controlled by mountain features, and the highest rainfalls occur where the mountains are exposed to the direct sweep of the westerly and north-westerly winds. The mean annual rainfall (see map) ranges from as little as 300 mm in a small area of Central Otago to over 7000 mm in the Southern Alps. The average for the whole country is high, but for the greater part it lies between 600 and 1500 mm, a range regarded as favourable for plant growth in the temperate zone. The only areas with under 600 mm are found in the South Island, to the east of the main ranges. These include most of Central and North Otago, and South Canterbury. In the North Island, the driest areas are central and southern Hawke's Bay, Wairarapa, and Manawatu where the average rainfall is 800-1000 mm a year. Of the remainder, much valuable farm land, chiefly in northern Taranaki and Northland, has upwards of 1500 mm. Over a sizeable area of both Islands rainfall exceeds 2500 mm a year but, with the exception of Westland, this is mountainous and unoccupied, much of it being forest covered.
For a large part of the country the rainfall is spread evenly through the year. The greatest contrast is found in the north, where winter has almost twice as much rain as summer. This predominance of winter rainfall diminishes southwards. It is still discernible over the northern part of the South Island but, over the southern half, winter is the season with least rainfall, and a definite summer maximum is found inland due to the effect of convectional showers. The rainfall is also influenced by seasonal variations in the strength of the westerly winds. Spring rainfall is increased in and west of the ranges as the westerlies rise to their maximum about October, while a complementary decrease occurs at the same time in the lee of the ranges.
Areas which are exposed to the west and south-west experience much showery weather, and rain falls on roughly half the days of the year. Over most of the North Island rain can be measured on at least 150 days a year except to the east of the ranges where there are, in places, fewer than 125 rain days. Those areas of the South Island with annual rainfall under 600 mm generally have about 100 rain days a year. In the far south the frequency of rain increases sharply; in Stewart Island and Fiordland rain days exceed 200 a year. Over most of the country between 55 and 65 percent of the rain days also qualify as wet days (2.5 mm or more). The percentage increases to over 70 in Westland, but in the low rainfall area of inland Otago there are only about 40 wet days a year compared with 100 rain days.
On the whole the seasonal rainfall does not vary greatly from year to year, the reliability in spring being particularly advantageous for agricultural purposes. It is least reliable in late summer and autumn when very dry conditions may develop east of the ranges, particularly in Hawke's Bay.
The highest daily rainfall on record is 560 mm which occurred at Milford Sound where the mean annual rainfall exceeds 6000 mm. Other areas with considerably lower rainfall are also subject to very heavy daily falls; such areas are to be found in northern Hawke's Bay and in north-eastern districts of the Auckland Province. By contrast, in the Manawatu district and in Otago and Southland daily falls reaching 80 mm are very rare.
|NORMAL MONTHLY AND ANNUAL RAINFALL (MILLIMETRES)* (1921-50)|
|* 25 millimetre equal 1 inch.|
Thunderstorms—Thunderstorms are not numerous. Their frequency is greatest in the north and west where thunder is heard on 15 to 20 days a year; east of the ranges (except in Gisborne) the figure is five or less.
Hail—Hail is most frequent in the south-west where it is reported on about 20 days a year, but for the greater part of the country it occurs on about five days a year or less. Most of the hailstones are small, but occasionally large stones cause local damage to glasshouses, and to orchards and market gardens, chiefly in Canterbury and Hawke's Bay.
Temperature—Mean temperatures at sea level decrease steadily southwards from 15°c in the far north to 12°c about Cook Strait, then to 9°c in the south. With increasing altitude, temperatures drop about 2°c per 1,000 ft. January and February, with approximately the same mean temperature, are the warmest months of the year. July is the coldest. Some temperature statistics for selected places are included in the table on climatological averages. Highest temperatures are recorded east of the main ranges, where they exceed 30°c on a few afternoons in most summers, usually in association with a north-westerly Föhn wind. The extremes for New Zealand (measured in a standard thermometer screen) are 38°c at Ashburton and — 19°c at Ophir (Central Otago).
As is to be expected, there is a small annual range of temperature (difference between mean temperature of the warmest and coldest months). In Northland and in western districts of both Islands the annual range is about 8°c. For the remainder of the North Island, and east coast districts of the South Island, it is 9°-10°c. Further inland it exceeds 11°c in places, reaching a maximum of 14°c in Central Otago where there is an approach to a continental type of climate.
Temperatures in the preceding paragraphs are recorded on the Celsius scale (formerly called centigrade), and not the Fahrenheit scale. The degree Celsius (°c) equals 5/9 (°F—32).
Frost—It is well known that local variations in frostiness are considerable, even within quite small areas. On a calm, clear night the cold air in contact with a sloping surface gravitates slowly downhill to collect in valleys and depressions, and it is these “Katabatic” drifts which are mainly responsible for local temperature variations at night. Gently sloping ground with a northerly aspect tends to be least affected by frost. Favourable sites in coastal areas of Northland are free of frost, although further inland light frosts occur frequently in the winter months. At Albert Park, Auckland, the screen minimum thermometer (4 ft above the ground) has registered below 0°c only once in nearly 50 years, yet across the harbour at Whenuapai Aerodrome there are eight screen frosts per annum on the average. Excluding the uninhabited mountainous areas, the most severe winter conditions are experienced in Central Otago and the Mackenzie Plains of inland Canterbury, and on the central plateau of the North Island. Even in these areas night temperatures as low as —12°c are rarely recorded. Elsewhere over the North Island the winters are very mild and pastures maintain continuous growth. In both Islands sheep and cattle remain in the open all the year round.
Snow—The majority of New Zealanders rarely see snow except on the mountains. The North Island has a small permanent snow field above about 8,000 ft on the central plateau, but the snow line rarely descends below 2,000 ft even for brief periods in winter. In the South Island snow falls on a few days a year in eastern coastal districts and in some years may lie for a day or two even at sea level. In Westland it does not lie at sea level. The snow line on the Southern Alps is around 7,000 ft in summer, being slightly lower on the western side where the Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers descend through heavy bush to within 1,000 ft of sea level. In inland Canterbury and Otago, where there are considerable areas of grazing lands above 1,000 ft, snowfalls are heavier and more persistent and have caused serious losses of sheep during severe winters in the past. However, only rarely does the winter snow line there remain permanently below 3,000 ft.
Relative Humidity—Humidity is commonly between 70 and 80 percent in coastal areas and about 10 percent lower inland. It varies inversely to the temperature, falling to a minimum in the early afternoon when temperature is highest and frequently lying between 90 and 100percent during clear nights. As the following table shows, the diurnal variation is greater than the difference between summer and winter.
|Station||Mean Relative Humidity|
|3 a.m.||3 p.m.||3 a.m.||3 p.m.|
|Auckland (Mechanics Bay)||85||63||90||74|
Very low humidities—between 20 and 30 percent or lower—occur at times in the lee of the Southern Alps where the Föhn effect is often very marked. In summer the hot, dry “Canterbury Norwester” is generally a most unpleasant wind. Cool south-westerlies are also at times very dry when they reach eastern districts. In Northland the humid mid-summer conditions are inclined to be rather oppressive though temperatures rarely reach 30°c. Dull, humid spells are generally not prolonged anywhere, but their frequency shows a marked increase in the south.
Sunshine—The sunniest areas are to be found near Blenheim, Nelson, and Whakatane, where the average duration of bright sunshine exceeds 2,400 hours per annum. The rest of the Bay of Plenty and Napier are only slightly less sunny. A large portion of the country is favoured with at least 2,000 hours. Even Westland, despite its high rainfall, has 1,800 hours. Southland, where sunshine drops sharply to 1,700 hours per annum, lies on the northern fringe of a broad zone of increasing cloudiness. Four hundred miles further to the south at Campbell Island the sunshine has the extremely low value of 650 hours per annum. A pleasant feature of the New Zealand climate in the high proportion of sunshine during the winter months. To eliminate the effect of varying day-length the summer and winter sunshine at a few selected stations have been expressed as a percentage of the possible sunshine.
Climatological Averages—The following table provides a brief summary of the main climatological elements for selected locations.
|Station||Altitude||Annual Averages||Air Temperature (Degrees Celsius)|
|Rain Days (0.2 mm or More)||Wet Days (2.5 mm or More)*||Bright Sunshine||Days of Screen Frost (min. air temp. less than 0° c)||Mean Temp.||Mean Daily Maximum||Mean Daily Minimum||Mean Annual|
|* 2.5 mm. equals 0.10 in.|
|Auckland (Albert Park)||160||173||101||2,090||0||15.3||23||14||16||8||27||3|
|Lake Waikaremoana (Onepoto)||2,110||195||133||..||5||10.9||20||9||11||3||28||-1|
|Christchurch (Botanic Gardens)||22||117||55||1,990||36||11.4||22||10||12||1||32||-4|
NOTES: (1) Averages of rain days and wet days 1950-66; sunshine 1935-60; mean temperature 1931-60; other temperature data and days of screen frost, various periods—all exceeding 10 years.
(2) For normal monthly and annual rainfall for these stations, see table under subsection on Rainfall.
Brief Review of 1970:Year—Rainfall was 10 to 30 percent above normal in Fiordland, the Alps, the Canterbury high country, parts of Nelson and Marlborough, in Bay of Plenty, Hauraki Plains, and parts of Gisborne, Hawke's Bay and Taupo. It was the same proportion below normal in most eastern districts of the South Island; Wellington, southern Wairarapa, and over the greater part of Northland.
1970 was equal with 1956 and 1962 as the warmest year recorded in New Zealand since temperature observations were first taken in 1862. The average departure above normal was 0.9° Celsius.
Sunshine was 50 to 250 hours below normal east of the main ranges in both Islands, except in parts of Otago and Southland and inland Canterbury. It was also below normal in Bay of Plenty and Buller. Greatest drops below average were recorded on the Canterbury Plains from Methven through Ashburton to Timaru. Northland, Auckland and western districts of the North Island as far south as North Taranaki and Taumarunui were favoured with 50 to 250 hours above normal sunshine.
Seasonal Notes—January was a warm month; in the North Island it was sunny and dry but in the South Island cloudy and wet. The drought which had affected North Otago and South Canterbury for several months, and also other parts of Canterbury to a lesser extent, broke at this time.
February was a dry month over the greater part of the country. For the first two months of the year the total rainfall was unusually low in many western North Island districts. Serious drought conditions affected the main dairying areas of the North Island, with some herds of cows drying off and winter silage being fed early to others. Sheep were also short of feed and lost condition. Forest fires were sparked off in many areas.
March was wet and warm. The very dry conditions which had been affecting the country, especially the North Island, were relieved by good rains commencing mainly from the middle of the month.
April was dry and warm. May was a sunny month marked by an unusually high frequency of southerly to easterly winds, and it was the only month of 1970 with temperatures below normal over the whole country; a cold southerly spell from the 23rd to the 27th brought considerable snow, especially in the central high country of the North Island.
June was a mild month with rainfall close to normal in many parts of the country; growth was good for the time of the year, with stock wintering well. July was unusually mild with a high frequency of westerly winds; snow was reported in the high country of both Islands after southerly changes on the 13th and 27th. Stock were in good condition and the weather proved favourable for early lambs.
August was marked by an unusually high frequency of northerly to easterly winds. It was cloudy, mild, and wet with some major floods. Widespread flooding of the Rangitaiki Plains and other parts of eastern Bay of Plenty occurred following heavy rain.
The winter months of June, July and August were the mildest for many years in parts of the South Island, including Christchurch, the Hermitage, and Naseby (Central Otago).
September was marked by an unusually high frequency of north-westerly winds. It was the wettest September over the country as a whole since 1943 and also stormy and very cloudy. A particularly cold southerly change on the 24th brought snow to many inland districts of the South Island, causing considerable losses of lambs; severe frosts which followed in the south on the 25th and 26th proved disastrous to the Central Otago fruit crop.
October was a cloudy month with low rainfall in most areas east of the main ranges. In northern districts of the North Island the lack of sun caused poor growth and low dairy production.
Barometric pressures were unusually high in November, which was dry, warm, and sunny. December was also warm and dry. The total rainfall for these two months was particularly low about Cook Strait. By the end of the year pastures were badly dried up in many areas, causing a drop in dairy production.
Summary of Meteorological Observations for 1970—The observation from which the following summary was compiled for the year 1970 were at 0900 hours New Zealand standard time, i.e., 2100 hours Greenwich meantime.
|Station||Rainfall||Rain Days (0.2mm‡ or More)||Bright Sunshine||Days of Screen Frost*||Air Temperature (Degrees Celsius)†|
|Mean Temp.||Mean Daily Maximum||Mean Daily Minimum||1970 Extremes|
*Minimum Air Temperatures Less than 0.0°C.
†°C = 5/9 (°F - 32).
|Lake Tekapo||735||106||2,258,||82||9.7||22.2||8.5||10.9||-0.5||29 2||-6.7|
For 1970 the mean sea level pressure values in millibars at 0900 hours New Zealand standard time were: Auckland 1017.4; Kelburn, Wellington, 1015.3; Nelson Aerodrome, 1015.7; Hokitika Aerodrome, 1015.4; Christchurch, 1013.1; and Dunedin Airport, 1011.4.
EARLY HISTORY: General—When New Zealand was discovered by Europeans in 1642 it was found to be inhabited by a race of Polynesians called Maoris, who had migrated to these islands at least 300 years previously. It is generally accepted that the Maoris came originally from South-East Asia, whence, as proto-Polynesians, they moved eastwards from island to island until they reached the eastern Pacific, where they settled the islands now known collectively as Polynesia. From Polynesia the ancestors of the Maori sailed south-west in ocean-going canoes to reach New Zealand and these voyages were probably spread over several generations, perhaps several centuries. Oral Maori history and genealogy support the view that there was a final wave of migration of considerable magnitude about A.D. 1350. Adapting themselves to a new physical environment, in isolation from the outside world, the Maoris produced forms of social and economic organisation and material culture which were significantly different from their Polynesian prototypes.
Coming from tropical latitudes, the Maoris mainly confined themselves to the warmer North Island, and when discovered by Europeans were in a high state of neolithic civilisation, with marked superiority in the arts of wood carving and military engineering. Their principal social unit was the family group, and from combinations of the numerous groups were formed the subtribes and tribes. They had highly developed social and ritualistic customs, and their system of land tenure and methods of cultivation were communal within the subtribes. Inter-tribal and intra-tribal warfare was common, and as individuals they displayed exceptional courage and intelligence.
The immediate effect of European contacts on the Maoris was the outburst of a series of tribal wars waged with greater ferocity and a vastly greater loss of life than was customary in pre-European tribal engagements. The high mortality could, of course, be credited to the acquisition of a more lethal weapon, the musket. The advantage lay originally with the coastal tribes as a result of their earlier contact with Europeans, the wars continuing until all tribes were equally well armed. These wars were later followed by wars against the colonists, but after 1870 the story has been one of unbroken peace between Maoris and Europeans.
The introduction of European diseases and firearms, and the impact of European civilisation on the traditional way of life and customs of the Maoris, had such an adverse effect that their numbers must have been reduced by over half during the nineteenth century. However, the virility of the race gradually asserted itself, and from the beginning of the twentieth century the Maori population has been rapidly increasing.
The overseas territories of Niue Island and the Tokelau Islands had also long been inhabited by Polynesians from various successive migrations extending over considerable periods prior to their discovery by Europeans.
Discovery by Europeans—On 13 December 1642, Abel Janszoon Tasman, a navigator of the Dutch East India Company, discovered the country to which he gave the name of Staten Land, and which later became known as “Nieuw Zeeland”. Tasman had left Batavia on 14 August 1642, and, after having discovered Tasmania, he steered eastward and sighted the west coast of the South Island, described by him as a high mountainous country. Sailing north, he had the misfortune to come into conflict with the Maoris at Golden Bay, on the north coast of the South Island, so that, though he continued his northward journey until he reached the northern tip of the country, he did not again attempt to land. His exploration was of necessity very cursory, for having explored only part of one coast he had no knowledge of the country's extent or shape.
There is no record of any European visit to New Zealand after Tasman's departure until Captain James Cook sighted land on 7 October 1769 near Gisborne. Cook and a party of men from the Endeavour landed at Gisborne on 9 October 1769. On his first voyage Cook spent 6 months exploring the New Zealand coastline, and he completely circumnavigated the North and South Islands. His activities can be best described by saying “he found New Zealand a line on a map, and left it an archipelago”. Not only was Cook's ability shown by his cartographical accuracy, but also in his peaceful dealings with the Maoris.He returned to New Zealand again in 1773, 1774, and in 1777. His careful observations made New Zealand known to the western world; the accounts of his voyages were translated into a dozen languages. The bi-centenary of Cook's first visit to New Zealand was celebrated in 1969; an account of his voyages of discovery in the Pacific is given on pages 1116 to 1128 of the 1969 issue of the Official Yearbook.
Several other explorers also visited New Zealand during the latter portion of the eighteenth century, amongst whom may be mentioned M. de Surville 1769, M. Marion du Fresne 1772, Captains Vancouver and Broughton 1791, Captain Raven 1792-93, Alejandro Malaspina and Jose de Bustamente y Guerra 1793, and Lieutenant Hanson 1793.
The European discovery of Niue Island was made by Captain Cook in 1774. The first recorded discovery of the Tokelau Islands was made by Quiros in 1606.
European Settlement and Colonisation—So far as is known, the first instance of Europeans being left in New Zealand to their own resources occurred in 1792, when Captain Raven of the Britannia landed a sealing party at Facile Harbour, on the west coast of the South Island, where they remained a little months before being called for.
In the years that followed, whaling stations sprang up along the coast, and a trade with New South Wales began not only in whale oil and seal skins, but also in flax and timber. In 1814 Samuel Marsden, chaplain to the Governor of New South Wales, obtained permission to send two of his protégés, Kendall and Hall, to the Bay of Islands to consider the desirability of establishing a mission station. Later they returned to Sydney for Marsden, who arrived in New Zealand to preach his first sermon at the Bay of Islands on Christmas Day, 1814. Of the many admirable activities undertaken by the missionaries, their action in having the Maori language “reduced to a rational orthography” deserves special mention.
In 1825 three separate, but abortive, attempts were made to found colonies; however for some years the only settlements were those round the principal whaling stations, although a number of Europeans gradually penetrated inland and resided there permanently, many marrying Maori women.
The first body of immigrants under a definite scheme of colonisation arrived in Port Nicholson in January 1840, there to found the town of Wellington, just one week before Captain William Hobson arrived at the Bay of Islands as Governor to proclaim British sovereignty (see later). These settlers were brought out from England by the New Zealand Company, whose moving spirit was Edward Gibbon Wakefield.
It was hoped that, by producing a proper balance of capitalists and artisans, self-contained communities could be successfully established. However, owing to the unsatisfactory nature of the land purchases, considerable difficulty was experienced in these initial settlements, and friction grew up not only between settlers and the Maoris, but also between the Governor and the settlers. Before his death in 1842 Governor Hobson had transferred his capital from Russell to Auckland, but this transfer was of little assistance to the colonists, who had extended their settlements to Wanganui, New Plymouth, and Nelson.
Following the death of Hobson, the existence of the colony became precarious, for, through lack of funds and weak administration, Maori aggression became a real menace. To cope with the situation, the Colonial Office appointed Captain George Grey as Governor. Being well equipped with troops and funds, as well as being a man of vigour and perception, Grey soon restored order and won the confidence of both the settlers and the Maoris. During Grey's term two further organised settlements were made. In co-operation with the New Zealand Company the Free Church of Scotland sponsored the Dunedin Settlement of 1848, and the Church of England the Canterbury Settlement of 1850. These settlements, owing to their more favoured situations, their satisfactory land-purchase agreements, and their freedom from trouble with the Maoris, achieved a greater measure of success in carrying out the company's avowed aims.
After Grey's departure the question of relationship with the Maoris again came to the fore through the land-purchasing activities of the settlers—a situation aggravated by subsequent lack of consideration for the Maori system of land tenure. Following an incident at Waitara in the Taranaki district, where a dispute arose concerning land titles, war broke out in 1860 and lasted spasmodically till 1870. The recall of Grey did not solve the problem, as Grey, an autocrat, could not work with the elected Ministers, nor did his presence prevent the confiscation of land belonging to the Maoris, whether friendly or hostile. It was under the sympathetic administration of Sir Donald McLean as Minister for Maori Affairs that the dispute finally died down.
These hostilities were confined to the North Island; and, in the meantime, in 1861, large alluvial deposits of gold had been discovered in the South Island—leading to a tremendous influx of population and an alteration of the economic structure of the country.
No organised form of European colonisation has at any time taken place in Niue Island or the Tokelau Islands.
SUBSEQUENT HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT (1870 ONWARDS)—The discovery of gold, by increasing the wealth of the South Island, allowed it to obtain a lead in commercial and political development which it long maintained. Moreover, with the subsequent agrarian expansion, especially in the development of the large pastoral holdings, the country ceased to be merely self-sufficient agriculturally, but began to develop a substantial export trade, mainly in wool.
These factors, together with freedom from strife with the Maori population, led after 1870 to a quickening in political activities. Under the leadership of Sir Julius Vogel a policy of extensive borrowing for railway and road construction was begun. The provincial system, which really commenced in 1853, had largely outlived its usefulness; in fact, the parochialism of the provincial assemblies had frequently proved obstructive, and in consequence the system was abolished in 1875, local administration being provided for by the Counties Act and the Municipal Corporations Act of 1876.
Of great social significance was the passing in 1877 of the Education Act, making education free, compulsory, and secular, while the laying during that decade of the first cable between Australia and New Zealand was a major advance in communications. At this time party politics began to enter into the parliamentary system, and the stamp conditions which prevailed in the eighties (due to a fall in the world price level) intensified the political atmosphere. By the abolition of plural voting in 1889, and the introduction of female suffrage in 1893, the way was opened for a practical expression of political convictions by all adult members of the community.
In 1891 Ballance, as Leader of the Liberal Party, became Premier, to be followed on his death in 1893 by Seddon, and during the next decade the legislative essays of this party evoked world-wide interest. The main aim of the legislation was social justice, and its principal manifestations were in land division, the establishment of the Court of Arbitration, and the introduction of old-age pensions. The policy of land division aimed at closer land settlement, and it was achieved by the compulsory subdivision of large estates, with subsequent loans to small independent farmers wishing to establish themselves. In inaugurating the Court of Arbitration the object was to eliminate strikes by giving labour a recognised bargaining status; and the enactment was in accord with the enlightened code of labour legislation passed at that time.
With the commencement of the refrigerated trade in 1882, the move to closer land settlement progressed rapidly, since the production of frozen meat and dairy produce for export encouraged more intensive farming. Thus, there arose a new farming class which in 1911, some five years after Seddon's death, was mainly responsible for the overthrow of the Liberal regime.
The policy of the succeeding Reform Party under Massey was one favouring agricultural production. Farming interests were given constant encouragement by a of enactments of which the extension of rural credit was typical. Three years after the advent of the Reform. Party the First World War, 1914-18, broke out, leading to the formation if a Coalition Government and an Imperial commandeer of exports. War activities were marked by heavy casualty lists, in proportion to the population, and by enhanced cordiality in Imperial relations. One noteworthy outcome of the war commandeer was the precedent for the establishment, after the war, of control boards to regulate the export of pastoral products.
Though the effects of the post-war depression during the period 1921-24 showed themselves in an increase in unemployment and slight wage reduction, no drastic legislation was necessary to stabilise economic conditions. During the following years the price level rose; and from the administrative side, the period was characterised by extensive public works expenditure, with particular attention to hydro-electric schemes and highways.
Owing to the encouragement given to farming, pastoral production constantly expanded, so that New Zealand became one of the world s greatest exporters of pastoral produce. As a consequence, her national income was extremely sensitive to price fluctuations of these products; so that, with the advent of the depression in 1930, her economic position became extremely vulnerable. In order to produce balanced budgets, both public and private, various legislative remedies were attempted. In particular, enactments were provided for unemployment relief, for the suspension, in effect, of compulsory arbitration, for the establishment of a Reserve Bank, for a mortgage moratorium, for raising the exchange rate, and for reduction in interest rates and wages. With the recovery in price levels and consequent general economic revival, amendments were made to several of these Acts, removing the more stringent measures. The election of a Labour Government in 1935 led to a change in administrative policy, the preoccupation being mainly with social problems. Further amendments were made to the depression legislation, certain restrictive measures were removed, and other temporary adjustments made permanent.
The general climate of opinion and gradual maturity of outlook furnished the background in which certain distinctive trends appear in legislation passed since 1936.
The first major influence was a humanitarian attitude reinforced by a progressive economic policy. Evidence of this is implicit in the provision for a basic wage, and later for a minimum wage, employment-promotion legislation, amendments to workers' compensation, industrial conciliation and arbitration, mining, etc., legislation, the system of basic prices for certain primary produce, the creation of farm industry reserves, and the rationalisation of production and marketing by the establishment of boards for certain items of primary produce.
The second major influence on legislation was conditioned by the outbreak of the Second World War, 1939-45. A vast body of legislation was placed on the statute book during the war period dealing with the control of manpower and materials, stabilisation of prices, wages, and rents, conditions of employment and suspension of certain peacetime features of industrial activity, discouragement of some industries and diversion to or encouragement of other industries, provision for rehabilitation, etc.
A third dominant trend was the acceptance of the principle that society should take active steps towards the improvement of the working, living, and social circumstances of its members. Foremost in this category was the Social Security Act and its later extensions providing for monetary benefits such as age, superannuation, family allowances, sickness, and unemployment, and by the provision of a system of medical, pharmaceutical, hospital, maternity, and other related benefits.
Other legislative enactments under this heading include the provision for paid annual holidays, reduction of working hours, extension of workers' compensation insurance, improvement in safety and health and welfare conditions in industry, and extension of educational facilities and opportunities.
A fourth approach to law making resulting from maturity of outlook has been the increased participation by New Zealand in international affairs consequent on its acceptance of responsibility in the wider issues of the present era. Legislation authorising participation in United Nations activities generally and in particular emergencies, such as military service in Korea, Malaya, and elsewhere; the extension of New Zealand representation in overseas countries and with the United Nations; the greater frequency of Commonwealth consultation; extension of aid to less developed countries, e.g., participation in the Colombo Plan, all bear witness to this change in outlook.
Another influence on legislation presents some parallels to that last mentioned, but is more concerned with the domestic sphere. It is exemplified in the increasing interest taken in welfare and social development generally of both the rapidly growing Maori population and the inhabitants of the islands of the Pacific with New Zealand ties.
Contemporaneously with the expansion of the field of legislative interest, the economic and industrial development of the country has proceeded with marked impetus in recent years. Expansion and diversification of manufacturing and servicing industries have provided avenues of employment for the growing labour force. At the same time the basic industries of the country, those concerned with farm production, have increased output, assisted by the rapid application of technological improvements and research findings.
In early days the New Zealand Government saw its role in the country's overseas territories as that of providing direction and guidance to less-developed areas. More recently, successive Governments have in various ways encouraged the inhabitants to take an increasing share in the administration of their communities, thus paving the way for self-government. Financial and other assistance was provided by the New Zealand Government for the expansion of educational facilities and opportunities, and for public works such as roading. Western Samoa, which had been administered as a Trust territory since 1946, became an independent territory from 1 January 1962. The Cook Islands became self-governing from 4 August 1965, although New Zealand continues to be responsible for their external affairs and defence. Cook Islanders remain New Zealand citizens. Fuller information is given in Section 38 of this Yearbook.
For detailed information, reference should be made to the many excellent books dealing with the subject of New Zealand history, of which the more recent ones are listed in the Select Bibliography in this Yearbook. A useful reference is the Encyclopaedia of New Zealand, published in 1966.
SOVEREIGNTY—Following representations from Maori chiefs for protection from the prevailing turmoil and lawlessness caused by tribal warfare and the rough element around the whaling stations, the New South Wales Government appointed, in 1832, Mr James Busby as British Resident at Russell. Owing to the failure to supply him with any means of exerting authority, his appointment was largely ineffective. Finally the disorder, and the friction between the two races, became so intolerable that even the missionaries, who were opposed to annexation, made representations for British sovereignty.
On 29 January 1840, Captain William Hobson, RN, arrived at the Bay of Islands, empowered, with the consent of the Maoris, to proclaim the sovereignty of Queen Victoria over the Islands of New Zealand, and to assume the government thereof. Hobson formally read his commissions at Kororareka on 30 January 1840, and on 6 February of the same year a compact called the Treaty of Waitangi was entered into, whereby all rights and powers of sovereignty were ceded to the Queen, all territorial rights being secured to the chiefs and their tribes.
On 21 May 1840 Governor Hobson proclaimed British sovereignty in the case of the North Island by virtue of the Treaty of Waitangi, and in the case of the South Island and Stewart Island by right of discovery. New Zealand remained a dependency of New South Wales until 3 May 1841, when it was created a separate colony by Royal Charter dated 16 November 1840. The capital was at first transferred from Russell to Auckland, but in 1865 it was again transferred, on this occasion to Wellington, where the seat of Government has since remained.
During Governor Grey's term, steps were taken to draft a constitution for the colony. An Act granting representative institutions was passed by the Imperial Parliament on 30 June 1852, and was published in New Zealand by Proclamation on 17 January 1853. Under it, provision was made for the constitution of a General Assembly consisting of a Legislative Council and a House of Representatives. Provision was also made for the division of the country into provinces, each province having an elected Council and Superintendent. (The provincial system was abolished in 1875 and the Legislative Council in 1950.) In the first General Assembly of 27 August 1854 certain members of this body were associated with the permanent members of the executive but they did not hold any portfolios. It was not until 7 May 1856 that responsible government was actually established.
With the gradual development of the country's economy, the acquisition of political and administrative experience, and the increasing desire for self-reliance in political matters, the degree of self-government became more complete. In recognition of this and of a nascent sense of nationality, New Zealand was given the title of Dominion in lieu of Colony, the new title taking effect on 26 September 1907.
Of the constitutional events in recent years the passing by the United Kingdom Parliament of the Statute of Westminster in December 1931 was of major importance. The draft of this statute was submitted for the confirmation of the various Commonwealth Legislatures before its passage through the United Kingdom Parliament. The statute granted complete autonomy to the various self-governing member countries, but it did not automatically apply to Australia or New Zealand. In other words, its operation in the latter self-governing members of the Commonwealth was declared to require specific adoption by the Legislatures of those countries. It was not until 1947 that the New Zealand Government formally adopted the Statute of Westminster.
NEW ZEALAND'S INTERNATIONAL ACTIVITIES—Though in the nineteenth century Sir Julius Vogel and the Right Hon. R. J. Seddon had original views about the policy which Britain and New Zealand should pursue in the Pacific area—views which they announced with vigour—New Zealand did not acquire the right to conduct an independent foreign policy until the end of the First World War when the full nationhood of the “Dominions” was recognised. For some years after this, however, successive New Zealand Governments chose not to exercise this right and (pursuing a passive role in the League of Nations and refraining from establishing diplomatic relations with foreign Governments, or with other members of the Commonwealth apart from Britain) preferred to make known any views on matters of foreign affairs only to the British Government and through the confidential channels of intra-Commonwealth consultation.
Few pressures existed in the 1920s and early 1930s to impel New Zealand towards enunciating an independent foreign policy. The population was mainly British in composition and comparatively few were concerned to distinguish between New Zealand's interests and those of Britain. Nor had they much cause to do so: New Zealand had established a fruitful economic partnership with Britain, upon which country nearly all her material and cultural links were centred; and New Zealand's surest protector against dangers which it was incapable of meeting alone was the Royal Navy. It was, moreover, realised that New Zealand in her own right could make little impact on world affairs, whereas Britain was a great power capable of affecting the pattern of world events. New Zealand “foreign policy” therefore consisted chiefly in seeking to modify British policy in those few cases where New Zealand had a strong interest or a viewpoint rather different from that of Britain.
The emergence of an independent New Zealand foreign policy is usually held to date from 1935. Some Ministers in the new Government were deeply interested in world affairs in general, and the Government's approach was influenced by theory and principle. In particular, they held strong views on the principle of collective security and upon the League of Nations as the embodiment of that principle. In its method of championing the principles of collective security, pressing for the restoration of the authority of the League of Nations and, at a time when the United Kingdom Government was pursuing the policy which came to be known as appeasement, urging positive League action over Abyssinia, Spain, and China, the Government came to depart from the pattern of the previous 16 years: for, in addition to making its views known in confidential communications to the United Kingdom Government, it also stated them with vigour in the international forum of the Council and the Assembly of the League of Nations.
There was nevertheless, no fundamental departure from the traditional policy of association with Britain. Moreover, the course that would be followed in the event of war was never in doubt. As early as 16 May 1938 a leading member of the Government had said, “If the Old Country is attacked, we are too . . . we will assist her to the fullest extent possible”. When war broke out the Prime Minister, the Right Hon. M. J. Savage, expressed New Zealand's position in terms that were as true in 1939 as they would have been in 1914:
“Behind the sure shield of Britain we have enjoyed and cherished freedom and self-government. Both with gratitude for the past, and with confidence in the future, we range ourselves without fear behind Britain. Where she goes, we go. Where she stands, we stand.”
But the Second World War changed the pattern of power in the world and made it necessary for New Zealand gradually to revise its foreign policy and its method of implementing that policy. Even though the basic attachment of New Zealanders to Britain was little affected, the fact became manifest that Britain was no longer a power able to determine events on a world scale and that, since New Zealand interests could no longer be protected by British actions alone, it did not suffice to confine New Zealand foreign policy to occasional attempts to persuade the British Government to take note of New Zealand views. Japanese aggression and, later, the rise of Communist China forced New Zealand to face the reality of its geographical location with respect to Asia and the Pacific and to develop an additional relationship with the only other friendly power capable of protecting New Zealand—the United States of America—with the least possible prejudice to its association with the United Kingdom.
During the war years New Zealand was admitted to the councils of the Allies and was expected to advance informed views. The Government honoured its responsibility and, having established in wartime the habit of participating in the making of international decisions,accepted it as natural that New Zealand should continue to participate in the development of a post-war world order and in subsequent international consultations. To this end New Zealand established (in effect from 1943) a professional Department of External Affairs and a career foreign service, and proceeded slowly to establish diplomatic missions in countries where New Zealand's interests merited protection. In particular, New Zealand sought increasingly to make its individual contribution to fostering good relationships with its neighbours in the Pacific and Asia and to increasing the measure of security and welfare in these areas.
To be woven into any post-war policy was the now traditional New Zealand belief in the principle of collective security and international justice, especially as symbolised by the United Nations. This was by no means an easy task in a world where the divisions of the cold war were reflected in competing regional alliances. There had to be a place, too, for belief in the ability of international co-operation to control armaments and to eliminate poverty, disease, and other economic and social causes of international tension.
The threat to New Zealand's security, posed by the entry of Japan into the war at a time when the United Kingdom was fully committed in Europe, brought New Zealand into the closest relations with two of her neighbours on the borders of the Pacific—Australia and the United States. Recognition of the need for a greater measure of collaboration with Australia resulted in the signing in 1944 of the Canberra Pact which provided machinery for continuing consultation between the two Governments. Upon the entry of Japan into the war, both New Zealand and Australia had looked principally to the United States for protection. Relations among the three countries thus entered a new phase. The close association of wartime found expression in peacetime in the Anzus Treaty, in which, for the first time, New Zealand and Australia entered into a treaty of alliance and mutual defence with a foreign country and achieved the aim of both countries to enter into a close relationship with the major Pacific power. The Anzus Treaty, which came into force in April 1952, gives an assurance of United States support in the event of an armed attack from any quarter in the Pacific and so constitutes New Zealand's major safeguard from aggression in the area.
The establishment of SEATO, like the formation of the ANZUS alliance, took place against a background of continuing insecurity and of danger in the Far East. In 1950 New Zealand had participated in collective action by the United Nations in Korea. In 1954, following the Indo-China crisis and the Geneva Accords, a broader collective defence treaty covering South-East Asia and the South West Pacific, known as the Manila Treaty, was signed by New Zealand and Australia, France, Pakistan, the Philippines, Thailand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The parties agreed that in the event of armed attack on the parties or on a “protocol” State (Laos, Cambodia, and South Vietnam) they would act to meet the common danger. The parties established the South East Asia Treaty Organisation (SEATO) in Bangkok. In furtherance of its obligations under the Manila Treaty, New Zealand sent forces to Thailand for some months in 1962 and to South Vietnam in 1965. In 1955 New Zealand had transferred its war-time commitment from the Middle East to South-East Asia and agreed to contribute forces to a Commonwealth Far East Strategic Reserve. These forces participated in the Malayan Emergency and in the defence of Malaysia and Singapore against Indonesian confrontation. New Zealand, with Australia, became associated with the Anglo-Malayan Defence Agreement concluded in 1957, which subsequently became the Anglo-Malaysian Defence Agreement upon the formation of Malaysia in 1963. More recently New Zealand has participated in discussions on defence problems with Britain, Malaysia, Singapore, and Australia in the light of developing British policy concerning the British military presence in Malaysia and Singapore.
These developments reflected a new awareness of the international and strategic implications of New Zealand's position. In 1955 the Minister of External Affairs, the Hon. T. L. Macdonald, discussing New Zealand's foreign policy, said that the only possible threat to New Zealand's security could come from Asia and in particular from the spread of Communist power in South-East Asia. “New Zealand foreign policy grows”, he said, “from the need to reconcile geography and history, economic fact and strategic fact. In practical terms at present this seems that without weakening the many links which bind us to Britain and the whole Atlantic Community we must increase our concern with South-East Asia.”
This concern was already being expressed in social and economic terms as well as in defence. In 1950, New Zealand, along with a group of other Commonwealth countries, had become a member of the Colombo Plan established to assist the countries of South-East Asia to improve their standards of living. To New Zealand, a pioneer in the field of social legislation and a country with a high standard of living fairly evenly shared, the Colombo Plan has a special significance. Contributions, large by New Zealand standards (if small when measured against the potential need), have been made to it. The scope of New Zealand's presence in Asia widened considerably in the years following signature of the Manila Treaty—diplomatic relations were established with a growing number of countries in the area, and increased activity in other fields of co-operation besides that of defence followed the extension of this network of diplomatic posts. By the mid 1960s New Zealand had more complete representation in Asia than in Western Europe. Subsequent accession to regional membership of ECAFE, the Asian Development Bank and ASPAC (the Council for Asian and Pacific Co-operation) is further demonstration of this country's acceptance that it has a role to play in the Asian area.
New Zealand's direct interest in political, social, and economic developments in the South Pacific is reflected not only in its membership of such regional organisations as the South Pacific Commission, but also in a wide and growing range of contacts with island people and an increased sense of involvement in their problems. The evolution of self-government and nationalism in the South Pacific reached a new stage when Western Samoa became the first independent Polynesian state on 1 January 1962. Three years later the Cook Islands achieved internal self-government. In the course of 1970 both the Kingdom of Tonga and Fiji attained full independence. Including Nauru there are, therefore, now four independent states in the South Pacific. New Zealand's own colonial past, its liberal tradition of friendship for emergent peoples, and the fact that large numbers of Polynesian people have settled there, means that the islanders tend to look to New Zealand for leadership and encouragement. In particular, Western Samoa, Tonga, and Fiji already regard New Zealand as an important export market and as a source of administrative and technical assistance. Inevitably, New Zealand is going to be increasingly involved in the South Pacific region.
These regional concerns have implied no weakening of the belief in the pre-eminent value of action organised on a world basis to deal with social and economic, as well as security problems. New Zealand has continued to place special importance upon its membership of the United Nations. It has been an active participant in the work of the General Assembly, has been a member of all Councils of the Organisation, has provided troops to the United Nations Force in Korea, and military observers in Palestine, Kashmir, and Lebanon, and has endeavoured to assist all efforts to attain the political and social objectives outlined in the Charter.
If, since the Second World War, the facts of geography have had an important influence on New Zealand's attitudes towards foreign affairs, history and tradition continue nevertheless to mould its outlook. The historic links with the United Kingdom and with Western Europe and North America remain as close as ever; and the economic links with the United Kingdom, New Zealand's best customer, remain strong. No situation is, however, constant. One of the key problems of external political and economic policy now presented to New Zealand arises out of the movement towards political and economic integration in Europe and the continuing possibility of Britain's membership of the European Economic Community. New Zealand must expand the volume and value of its exports of primary products if the standard of living of its rapidly growing population is to be maintained and improved. In recent years it has become increasingly apparent, however, that the United Kingdom market is capable of only a limited expansion. The development of new markets in Asia and other less developed countries has been slowed by low income levels as well as by consumption patterns in which the type of foodstuff exported by New Zealand has not figured prominently. New Zealand's foreign policy is likely to continue the endeavour to reconcile geography and history, economic fact and strategic fact.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs—The External Affairs Act 1943 provided for the appointment of a Minister of External Affairs responsible for the conduct of New Zealand's foreign relations and for the establishment of a Ministry of External Affairs to assist him (formerly, the country's overseas interests had been handled by a section of the Prime Minister's Department). From 1 March 1970 the title of the Minister and Ministry was changed to Foreign Affairs.
The Ministry's primary responsibility is for the formulation and execution of New Zealand foreign policy. It conducts relations with other countries and communications with their governments and representatives in New Zealand. It operates New Zealand's aid programme and maintains diplomatic and consular representation abroad. Its overseas functions are discharged through a network of 27 diplomatic and consular posts consisting of embassies, high commissions, consulates-general, and other permanent missions. At home, the preparation and co-ordination of foreign policy recommendations is carried out in close association with a number of other government departments. The Ministry is administered jointly with the Prime Minister's Department. On three occasions since 1943 the Prime Minister has found it appropriate to hold the Foreign Affairs portfolio. The Secretary of Foreign Affairs is also Permanent Head of the Prime Minister's Department. For the first 23 years of the Ministry, Mr A. D. McIntosh held the two posts, and his successor, Mr G. R. Laking, also fills both positions.
Several other Government departments have an interest in the substantive aspects of New Zealand foreign affairs. For example, in economic and commercial matters the Ministry works closely with the Department of Industries and Commerce and with the Treasury. The Ministry has a special role too as a clearing house for material provided by New Zealand posts overseas for other departments, and through its posts it performs numerous services on behalf of departments without representatives abroad.
In the Official Section at the end of the Yearbook the diplomatic and other New Zealand representation overseas is listed.
New Zealand in the Commonwealth—Despite the emphasis in New Zealand's approach to international affairs resulting from the realities of its geographical position, membership of the Commonwealth remains a significant feature of its policy. In the past the Commonwealth, for New Zealand, has tended to be identified with Britain through special and historic ties. As these ties have loosened, with the growing orientation of Britain towards Europe, the Commonwealth has assumed a rather different perspective for New Zealand. Providing as it does for contacts with a wide range of countries, and on a great variety of subjects, it is a ready-made forum for co-operative effort and as such has particular value for the smaller and more isolated members such as New Zealand. Thus, while the Commonwealth association no longer reflects the similarity of outlook that was formerly apparent among its members, it has taken on new importance as a broadly-based grouping of nations that hold certain elements of their heritage in common and that adhere to the same fundamental principles, such as mutual respect and tolerance, in their dealings with others.
Although one of the oldest members, New Zealand, unlike some of its fellow members, did not seek to hasten the process of constitutional transition within the Commonwealth. At the Imperial Conference in 1930 the Prime Minister, the Right Hon. G. W. Forbes, stated that “We have felt that at all times within recent years we have had ample scope for our national aspirations and ample freedom to carry out in their entirety such measures as have seemed to us to be desirable”. There was little interest in the adoption of the relevant provisions of the Statute of Westminster enacted in 1931 to give legal endorsement to the transformation that had taken place in the relationship between Britain and the Dominions. It was not, in fact, until 1947 that the necessary formalities were completed in New Zealand by the passing of the Statute of Westminster Adoption Act.
Since that time there have been many changes in the Commonwealth association both in constitutional respects and in numbers of members. At the beginning of the Second World War there were only 5 members; in 1970 there were 31, three new members, Tonga, Western Samoa, and Fiji having joined in the course of that year. The adherence of these island nations of the South Pacific will not only bring another distinctive, cultural tradition to the association. It will also reinforce co-operation in a region of particular concern to New Zealand, as Commonwealth co-operation has done in Africa, Asia, and elsewhere. The Commonwealth has thus become an entity embracing several continents and its relationships have taken on a new scope and emphasis. New Zealand, itself a country where two races live side by side, sees in the Commonwealth a special opportunity for multi-racial cooperation and understanding.
The importance New Zealand attaches to the Commonwealth association has been given practical expression in its membership of a number of Commonwealth organisations. As well, New Zealand contributes to the budgets of the Commonwealth Secretariat and the Commonwealth Foundation, which were both established at the Commonwealth Prime Ministers' meeting in 1965. The Commonwealth Foundation, an independent fund administered by a board of trustees consisting of representatives of “member nations”, has contributed greatly to the growing areas of common endeavour. It has sponsored official and non-official Commonwealth organisations that provide links between administrators, engineers, lawyers, accountants, scientists, and private individuals in the different Commonwealth countries. Similarly, the Commonwealth Secretariat, under the leadership of its Secretary-General, has provided a focus for Commonwealth activities, and a basis for extending co-operation between Commonwealth Governments.
New Zealand and the South Pacific—The first area of the world towards which New Zealanders developed a distinct and characteristic attitude was the South Pacific. This is New Zealand's immediate environment, its Polynesian peoples close kin to the New Zealand Maori, its islands nearest and most important in the lines of communication which link New Zealand with America and Europe.
Within a decade of New Zealand's establishment as a British colony Bishop Selwyn had made it the base for Anglican missions in the South Pacific and Sir George Grey as Governor had begun to advocate a policy of expansion in the area. The increasing involvement of other powers and a desire to develop trade led Sir Julius Vogel in the 1870s to take up Grey's idea and to put forward various schemes for political and commercial expansion, which, however, found no favour in London. In the 1880s New Zealand joined the Australian colonies in an effort to preserve “Oceania for the Anglo-Saxons”, and soon after the movement reached its peak in the robust opposition of Richard John Seddon to the bargaining away of Samoa in 1899.
The meagre fruit of half a century's agitation was the annexation in 1901 of the Cook Islands and their inclusion within the boundaries of New Zealand. Thereafter, New Zealand's interest in the South Pacific declined as its trade and its thoughts came to centre more and more on Great Britain. But though declining, the tradition was still strong enough to provide support for the Imperial Federation movement in the first decade of the twentieth century and, more practically, to inspire New Zealand on the outbreak of war in 1914 to occupy Germany's colony of Western Samoa.
At the end of the war Western Samoa, like other former German possessions, was retained by the occupying power under a League of Nations Mandate. New Zealand embarked on its new responsibility with greater enthusiasm than it had shown in the Cook Islands and much effort was devoted to solving the problems of the territory. The rate of change thus created, however, proved too rapid for the tradition-loving Samoans. In the late 1920s a series of unfortunate incidents occurred and, for some time afterwards, the pace slackened. The opening up in the late 1930s of air routes across the Pacific led New Zealand, along with other countries, to take an increased interest in some of the more remote islands in the area, but it was the outbreak of the Second World War which forcibly reminded the country of its situation.
Overnight half-forgotten islands became strategic points for the defence of New Zealand and its allies, and New Zealanders again became aware of the need to prevent them from falling into unfriendly hands. Accordingly, New Zealand joined with Australia in seeking ways to guarantee the future security of the area, and there emerged first the Canberra Pact of 1944 and later the 1947 Agreement to establish the South Pacific Commission.
Through the Commission the Governments administering territories in the South Pacific—Britain, the United States, France, Australia, New Zealand, and (until 1962) the Netherlands—have made a concerted effort to promote the economic and social development of the area and its peoples. In the 22 years of its existence the Commission has, within its budgetary limits (its budget for 1970, $1,022,730), done much valuable work, particularly in bringing the islanders together and developing a sense of community amongst them. Originally laying much stress on research, the Commission has come to concentrate mainly on providing technical assistance and on pooling experience of handling common problems of development. Its membership has grown to include Western Samoa and Nauru. At the same time the importance of the South Pacific Conference has increased. The territorial representatives who attend the Conference now have a decisive voice in determining the Commission's work programme. Close working links are maintained with United Nations specialised agencies which take an active interest in the region.
But New Zealand has not been content with promoting progress in the economic and social spheres only. At the San Francisco Conference in 1945 it took a leading part in working out the trusteeship system embodied in the United Nations Charter, and subsequently the League of Nations Mandate for Western Samoa was replaced by a trusteeship agreement.
In accordance with the wishes of the Samoan people, a programme of political and constitutional development was launched which continued throughout the 1950s and which culminated in the establishment of the independent State of Western Samoa on 1 January 1962. The transfer of sovereignty did not, however, weaken the close and friendly relationship which had grown up between Western Samoa and New Zealand and this was confirmed in Treaty of Friendship between the two countries signed in August 1962. In the educational as well as in other fields New Zealand assists Western Samoa.
Whilst Western Samoa was moving towards independence, constitutional development was taking place in New Zealand's other island territories. Following expert surveys a programme of economic and social development for the Cook Islands was formulated in 1955 and legislative assemblies for the Cook Islands and for Niue were set up in 1957. In 1962 the New Zealand Government gave these bodies full responsibility for allocating the large subsidies granted by New Zealand. In the same year possible alternatives concerning constitutional development were submitted to the assemblies. Both chose full internal self-government together with a continued association with New Zealand. Events thereafter moved most rapidly in the Cook Islands. In 1963 a “Shadow” Cabinet was set up and a Leader of Government Business elected. The following year the New Zealand House of Representatives passed the Cook Islands Constitution Act, with provision for the Act itself to come into force after a General Election in the Cook Islands. This election was held on 20 April 1965 and, after the New Zealand Parliament had at the request of the Cook Islands Government made certain amendments to the Constitution Act, the new Constitution was brought into force on 4 August 1965 and the Cook Islands became a self-governing nation in free association with New Zealand. The Legislative Assembly, assured of New Zealand's financial assistance, is fully responsible for the internal affairs of the Cook Islands.
Progress in the constitutional field has also been made in Niue and the Tokelau Islands, New Zealand's remaining dependent territories. On 1 November 1968, at the request of the Niue Assembly, a full member system of Government was introduced, giving the Executive Committee responsibility for the portfolios controlling all Government Departments. Responsibility for deciding priorities for government works and expenditure has been given by the Administrator to the Tokelau Islands Councils or Fonos which have also fully discussed their future development and have expressed the wish (as have the people of Niue) to retain their association with New Zealand. At the request of the Fonos, the New Zealand Government has instituted a pilot programme to assist Tokelau Islanders to resettle in New Zealand.
The independence of Western Samoa, self-government in the Cook Islands and the progress of the remaining New Zealand territories are indicative of broader developments in the South Pacific, developments which included in 1970 the attainment of full independence by the Kingdom of Tonga and by Fiji. Economic, social, and educational development has made the peoples of the area more self-conscious and desirous of managing their own affairs. New Zealand supports these changes, especially those which promote the development of regional co-operation amongst territories of the area and the Government's assistance is increasingly being directed to forms of aid of benefit to a wider group of territories; an example of this is the New Zealand Bursary Scheme under which students from certain English-speaking territories in the South Pacific will be able to undertake courses at the new University of the South Pacific in Fiji.
New Zealand in the United Nations—For New Zealand, geographically isolated and with limited direct diplomatic relations, the United Nations is inevitably one of the most important forums available, not only to influence the course of international events, but also to secure the friendship and understanding of the world community. For any country, its international reputation is a valuable asset. If New Zealand is better known and commands more influence in international affairs than some other small States similarly situated, this is, in some measure at least, due to New Zealand's record of active participation in the United Nations.
New Zealand's share of the United Nations' regular budget is 0.36 percent although a reduction to 0.32 percent is in prospect; in 1969-70 this meant a New Zealand contribution to the organisation of $404,373.
United Nations Security and Peacekeeping Activities—It has been noted earlier that the first significant expression of an independent New Zealand foreign policy occurred in the League of Nations and was directed to supporting the principle of collective security. Support for this principle later and through the United Nations has remained a cornerstone of New Zealand's foreign policy.
The purposes which motivated the policy in 1935 were strongly held beliefs, rather than principles developed from any careful assessment by a national foreign service. The beliefs were nevertheless a reflection of widely held concern over world events, a concern which the succeeding years were to reinforce. It was, therefore, perhaps understandable that at San Francisco in 1945 New Zealand should argue so forcibly, if unsuccessfully, to eliminate the veto and to strengthen the collective security provisions of the United Nations Charter.
Despite its physical isolation, New Zealand has felt unable to regard with unconcern the fate of other small countries helpless to defend themselves against a powerful aggressor and thus liable to be picked off one by one.
The United Nations does not, it is true, offer a complete guarantee of New Zealand's or any other small country's security against aggression. Nor has it yet achieved agreement on other than limited measures in the field of disarmament. But New Zealand Governments have acted upon the conviction that the United Nations, and it alone, contains the rudiments of a universal collective system, and that it is through the United Nations, and not through its abandonment in favour of some alternative, that an effective and comprehensive collective security system may eventually be developed and agreement on disarmament achieved.
Within the United Nations the expression of this policy has taken several forms. New Zealand has sought to remove the causes which might produce the need for recourse to collective security action. Its representatives have urged that the Assembly be used as a place for harmonising relations between nations: they have voiced the need for restraint in the pursuit of national objectives; they have consistently sought and supported responsible action in aid of an effective international organisation; and they have reiterated the need for the early adoption of a broad programme of supervised disarmament.
New Zealand was elected to the Security Council, which is charged with the primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, for the years 1954 and 1955, and for a second term in 1966 when membership for the council was increased from 10 to 15.
New Zealand has also advocated adequate and timely preparations in case aggression should occur and has supported the fullest possible development of the United Nations' capacity for peacekeeping. New Zealand has been prepared to play its part: forces were supplied to the United Nations Force in Korea and military observers to the United Nations Observer Groups in Palestine, Kashmir, and Lebanon; a civilian police unit has served in Cyprus; and the Government has indicated to the Secretary-General its intention in principle to designate a stand-by unit which would be available for properly instituted peace-keeping operations of the Organisation in the future.
In some respects, however, the United Nations has not lived up to the hopes placed in it. There has never been complete agreement in the United Nations itself on peacekeeping issues, and further practical developments to increase United Nations capability for peacekeeping are difficult to foresee, due to the existing power conflicts in the world, or in view of the divergent interests of many of its present members. New Zealand has therefore recognised that the objective of developing the United Nations potential in security and peacekeeping is a long-term one, and that the United Nations in its present form must be buttressed by regional defensive alliances.
Economic and Social Activities—Apart from this substantial and primary concern with international peace and security, other aspects of the work of the United Nations have increased greatly in importance in recent years. Article 55 of the United Nations Charter recognised that peaceful and friendly relations among nations depend largely on conditions of economic and social progress. Advancement in these latter fields absorbs annually more and more of the United Nations' resources, and represents at least one area in which international understanding and co-operation are reaping tangible rewards. First the ‘60s and now the 70s have been designated as “Development Decades” and an International Development Strategy—an overall plan setting targets for development during the Second Decade—was adopted by the twenty-fifth anniversary Commemorative Session in 1970.
The United Nations organ with primary responsibility in this vast field is the Economic and Social Council (or ECOSOC), an elective body of 27 members, which co-ordinates the activities of the wide variety of bodies with interests in these fields, ranging from the functional Commissions and Committees of the United Nations itself to the independent specialised agencies.
The biggest single task now facing ECOSOC is to promote and direct programmes for economic development in underdeveloped countries. New Zealand had always recognised the need for this type of development, and has been concerned to ensure that the international programmes in this field should be effective and realistic. Its interest in social and economic questions is illustrated by its membership of ECOSOC from 1947-49, and 1959-61; and it has again been elected by the General Assembly to serve over the period 1971-73. New Zealand in 1963 became a full regional member of the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East (ECAFE), a body of which it had previously been a non-regional member. New Zealand has also served terms of office from time to time on the Status of Women Commission, the Technical Assistance Committee, and on the Statistical, Social, and Fiscal Commissions. It is currently serving on the Commission on Human Rights for a second consecutive term for the period 1969-71, and on the Population Commission for the period 1969-72.
In undertaking these responsibilities, New Zealand may to some extent be regarded as “taking its turn”. It is, however, keenly aware of the advantages of doing so. It certainly shares with others an interest in ensuring that economic and social conditions are such as to permit ordered political progress. It is concerned to ensure that where political principles are at issue, the beliefs which New Zealanders hold as essential should be recognised and, if possible, accepted by the world community. Sometimes, too, there are strong reasons of self-interest; it is important that New Zealand's interests and its special problems be taken into account in the work of these bodies. Moreover, the international activities of the various agencies are nowadays on such a scale (the United Nations Development Programme, for example, spends more than $200 million a year), that detailed knowledge of their work can provide mutually valuable opportunities for New Zealand to provide goods and expert services for their programmes.
Specialised Agencies—New Zealand is a member of all specialised agencies except the International Development Association, and is also a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which, though not strictly a specialised agency, exists under the aegis of the United Nations. New Zealand's contributions to the regular budgets of the agencies, which are based for the most part on a scale of assessment similar to that used in the United Nations itself, range from $2,600 to $199,000 annually and totalled some $720,000 in 1969-70. New Zealand has also subscribed capital to the financial agencies.
Convinced of the value of the form of international co-operation that the agencies represent, New Zealand participates actively in their work. In the case of the technical agencies, there are direct benefits to New Zealand in membership. Membership of the Universal Postal Union, for example, is essential to facilitate the efficient international movement of mails to and from this country; and the International Telecommunication Union works to promote the most rational and efficient operation of world-wide telecommunications services. The World Meteorological Organisation is the medium for establishing a world-wide network for the rapid exchange of meteorological information, which is of particular value to remote areas like New Zealand. In other cases, New Zealand benefits by the free interchange of knowledge and experience, and from the endeavours of the agencies to establish world-wide standards of safety, to promote facilitation of international traffic, and to examine restrictive or discriminatory practices in these fields. The ILO is concerned with protecting the basic dignities and freedoms of the wage earner and brings together representatives of governments, employers, and workers to frame international conventions on working and living conditions.
In addition to its contributions to the regular budgets of the agencies, New Zealand gives voluntary assistance in the form of further monetary grants, the service of experts to developing countries (for example in physiotherapy, police work, forestry and education), and donations of equipment or commodities.
Two major fields of this sort of additional assistance arc the contributions made to the United Nations Development Programme and to the World Food Programme. New Zealand has given annual contributions to UNDP (in 1969-70 we gave $450,000), and in addition has sent experts abroad to work in the field on UNDP assignments. The WFP is a programme approved by the United Nations and FAO in 1961 and administered jointly by them. For the 8 years 1963-70 New Zealand made total grants of US$1,670.000, of which US$610,000 was in cash, and US$1,060,000 in commodities. For 1971-72, New Zealand has pledged a further US$630,000, of which US$210,000 will be in cash and USS420,000 in commodities. New Zealand is a member of the Inter-Governmental Committee which supervises the Programme.
New Zealand's accession to The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the International Monetary Fund, and the International Finance Corporation not only allows this country to participate in measures designed to increase the stability of international trade and promote the economic development of the underdeveloped areas of the world, but also serves to strengthen New Zealand's own economic position by providing access to more varied sources of capital for capital projects or for balance of payments purposes.
New Zealand is also a foundation member of the Asian Development Bank, established in 1967 under the auspices of ECAFE “to foster economic growth and co-operation in the ECAFE region”.
New Zealand has strongly supported any expansion of agency activity which will help the social and economic development of the Pacific Islands for which it is directly responsible. WHO has assisted in the past in the eradication of yaws and tuberculosis; FAO is at present the executing agency for a UNDP project designed to control the rhinoceros beetle which ravages much of the islands' coconut crops, and is also establishing a regional Fisheries Development Agency; UNESCO is setting up a Curriculum Development Unit at the University of the South Pacific; and expert services have supplied assistance in several smaller projects. Within the General Assembly of the United Nations and in specialised forums, New Zealand will continue to draw attention to the needs of the South Pacific.
New Zealand has in the past served on the governing bodies of WHO, FAO, and UNESCO, it served on the Executive Council of the UPU from 1964 to 1969 and is a member of the FAO Council for 1970-72. Although because of its size and limited scale of contributions, New Zealand is not likely to be elected frequently to the boards of at least the larger agencies, it can expect, over the years, to bear its share of administrative responsibility within them. In any case, by participation in the plenary sessions of the assemblies of the agencies, New Zealand is able to play some part in trying to ensure that the agencies do not duplicate activities with one another, that there is rational budgetary growth and that the rightful spheres of activity of the agencies are not unduly disrupted by the political conflicts that occur in the main United Nations forums.
Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)—As a result of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development held in Geneva in 1964, the General Assembly agreed to hold a triennial conference on Trade and Development with the objective of promoting international trade, particularly between countries at different stages of development, with a view to accelerating the economic growth of developing countries. UNCTAD held its second session in New Delhi early in 1968. UNCTAD is the United Nations body generally responsible for all matters relating to trade development. It is open to all United Nations members and other states who are members of the specialised agencies and the International Atomic Energy Agency. The conference has become a permanent organisation, with a Trade and Development Board which conducts the affairs of the organisation between plenary conferences. New Zealand commenced its second consecutive term on the Board in 1968. There are also within the organisation functional committees on commodities, manufacturers, financing of trade and shipping. New Zealand held a seat on the Committee on Commodities from 1967 to 1969, and is currently a member of the Committee on Shipping until 1971.
GATT—New Zealand has been a contracting party to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade since its inception in 1947. Although not strictly a specialised agency, the GATT has assumed some of the characteristics of one, and its activities have extended into all aspects of international trade including, more recently, measures to liberalise non-tariff barriers to agricultural trade and to provide special export opportunities for the goods of the developing countries.
New Zealand Collective Security—The defence of New Zealand has been judged by successive governments to call for active support for the concept of collective security. New Zealand alone is unable to defend its considerable but very isolated territory against aggression by any militarily significant power. As a small country with limited resources, New Zealand is in no position to maintain the extensive defence effort needed if all possible contingencies are to be met. As mentioned previously, it has therefore supported efforts to promote the effective implementation of the provisions of the United Nations Charter designed to establish a universal system of collective security and, until this goal is reached, has accepted that its defence efforts should be made in concert with like-minded countries in order to create a broader framework for security than its individual national effort could provide. This in turn involves the obligation to make credible and effective contributions to collective defence arrangements from New Zealand's own armed services.
Since the Second World War, New Zealand has contributed to collective security action on several occasions both within the United Nations and other arrangements. New Zealand's contribution to United Nations security and peacekeeping operations has already been noted. From 1955, units from the three services were based in Malaya as part of the Commonwealth Strategic Reserve, where they took part in actions during the Emergency. During 1962, New Zealand took part in a deployment to Thailand by SEATO member countries. New Zealand forces supported Malaysia in its successful resistance to Indonesian Confrontation. Elements of the New Zealand Army have been deployed in South Vietnam since 1964.
ANZUS—A basic expression of New Zealand's support for the principles of collective security is provided by the ANZUS Pact. This tripartite security treaty between Australia, New Zealand, and the United States was signed at San Francisco on 1 September 1951 and came into force on 29 April 1952. It assured New Zealand and Australia of American support in the event of aggression in the Pacific.
The main provision of the ANZUS Pact is that each party recognises “that an armed attack in the Pacific area on any of the Parties would be dangerous to its own peace and safety and declares that it will act to meet the common danger in accordance with its constitutional processes”. In the context of the agreement, an armed attack on any of the Parties is deemed to include “an armed attack on the metropolitan territory of any of the Parties or on the island territories under its Jurisdiction in the Pacific or on its armed forces, public vessels, or aircraft in the Pacific”.
In keeping with the close ties between the three countries, the machinery for consultation has been kept as simple and flexible as possible. Meetings of a Council of Ministers are generally held once a year to review situations affecting the treaty area.
SEATO—The Geneva Agreements for Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia, which were concluded on 21 July 1954, brought an end to the fighting in Indo-China, but they fell short of a fully guaranteed settlement of the security problems of the area. Eight governments—Australia, Britain, France, New Zealand, Pakistan, the Philippines, Thailand, and the United States—signed the South-East Asia Collective Defence Treaty, also known as the Manila Treaty, 8 September 1954. The Treaty came into force on 19 February 1955. Under its terms, each party recognised that aggression by means of armed attack in South-East Asia or the South-West Pacific against any of the Parties or against “a protocol state” (Cambodia, Laos, and South Vietnam) would endanger its own peace and safety, and agreed that it would act to meet the common danger in accordance with its constitutional process. In the event of any other threat, the parties would consult on the measures to be taken for the common defence.
The South-East Asia Treaty Organisation (SEATO) established under the Treaty is headed by a Council, made up of the Foreign Ministers of the signatory governments, which meets annually in members' capitals. Between meetings a body known as the Council Representatives provides continuity with representation generally provided by the heads of member countries' diplomatic missions in Bangkok; New Zealand is thus represented by its Ambassador to Thailand. From time to time various expert committees and study groups are convened to give collective advice to Council Representatives. The Council also agreed in February 1955 that the Military Advisers to the Ministers should meet as a group to advise it on measures for common defence. The civil and military Secretariat has its head-quarters at Bangkok.
The Manila Treaty has special significance because it is the only multilateral defence treaty applying to South-East Asia and the only treaty under which the United States has an obligation towards mainland South-East Asia. It is also the only treaty under which Thailand has any security guarantee. Thus the treaty helps maintain the fabric of collective defence without which the region would become the target of intensified Communist pressure. It provides a backing for the efforts of those countries of the area striving, as the Manila Treaty states, “to uphold the principles of democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law”. The military planning and exercises carried out under the Treaty are valuable in improving the capacity of the members to act together against aggression.
Neither in concept nor in structure is SEATO fitted for a major role in spheres other than defence. Nevertheless, the nature of the challenge in South-East Asia was recognised by making provision in the treaty for the parties separately and jointly, to increase their capacity to counter subversion and to co-operate in economic measures to promote economic progress and social well-being. While most of this action is taken outside the framework of SEATO, the Organisation has a useful aid programme designed to meet particular needs of the members of the treaty area. Thus SEATO has sponsored wide-ranging research efforts in the field of tropical medicine, agriculture, and engineering. A number of special SEATO professorships, post and under-graduate scholarships, research fellowships and travelling lectureships have been established. The SEATO Graduate School of Engineering, established in Bangkok in September 1959, has now developed into an independent institution known as the Asian Institute of Technology. A programme to provide for a SEATO agricultural survey of the farming problems of the South-East Asian member governments has recently been initiated; New Zealand has contributed one expert to this programme. Seminars and study groups have been organised to consider particular problems. Cultural exchanges have been promoted. The New Zealand Government funded $20,000 a year from which to contribute to SEATO aid programmes.
Commonwealth Arrangements—The Commonwealth defence arrangement known as ANZAM has provided a further basis for co-operation in defence matters, between Britain, Australia, and New Zealand. Unlike SEATO or ANZUS, it is not an organisation established by a formal treaty but has gradually evolved from the practice of close defence co-ordination among the three countries. One of the main functions of the ANZAM machinery has been the preparation of a joint plan for the defence of the area as a whole, and the co-ordination of existing plans drawn up by the respective national authorities. The three Governments, however, retain full control over their individual defence policies. ANZAM meetings are usually held in Canberra.
In 1965, New Zealand transferred its wartime commitments from the Middle East to South-East Asia and agreed to contribute with Britain and Australia to a Commonwealth Strategic Reserve to be established in Malaya and Singapore.
Upon its accession to independence in 1957, the Federation of Malaya concluded the Anglo-Malayan Defence Agreement, which was subsequently extended to Malaysia on its formation in September 1963 and re-named the Anglo-Malaysian Defence Agreement. Under its provisions, the United Kingdom undertook to assist in the defence of Malaysia and was accorded the right to maintain such forces, including a Commonwealth Strategic Reserve, as are agreed to be necessary for the defence of Malaysia and for the fulfilment of Commonwealth and international obligations. The Agreement has been accepted as applying generally to Singapore upon its accession to independence in August 1965. New Zealand, together with Australia, is associated with the Anglo-Malaysian Defence agreement by an exchange of letters placing on record the fact that the provisions of the Agreement applicable to the Commonwealth Strategic Reserve, in particular the provisions dealing with the status of forces, apply in respect of New Zealand forces in the Reserve. In a statement made when tabling the relevant documents in Parliament on 20 September 1963, the Prime Minister noted that “New Zealand has always given cause to believe that she would not stand idly aside in the event on an armed attack on Malaysia” and stated that “in the event of any armed threat against Malaysia the New Zealand Government would promptly consult with the Malaysian and other Governments concerned in the measures to be taken”.
New Zealand's military contribution in the area of Malaysia and Singapore has varied according to the circumstances of the time. In general, however, New Zealand has in recent years maintained in the area one infantry battalion, one RNZN frigate and one squadron of RNZAF transport. These forces took part in the Malayan Emergency and in the defence of Malaysia and Singapore against Indonesian confrontation.
Ministers of the five Commonwealth countries concerned—Australia, Britain, Malaysia, New Zealand, and Singapore—met in Kuala Lumpur in June 1968 and in Canberra in June 1969 to discuss defence problems.
At these meetings, the five powers reaffirmed their continuing interest in the peace and stability of the area and declared their intention to maintain close co-operation among themselves. Malaysia and Singapore took steps to improve their defence capability and in February 1969 Australia and New Zealand announced their intention to maintain forces at about existing levels. Progress was made towards the development of new five-power arrangements for the area. After June 1970, discussions continued on future defence arrangements.
The concept of collective security continues to underline the New Zealand approach. New Zealand forces are designed as a contribution to the security of South-East Asia as a whole and will have a particular function of assistance to Malaysia and Singapore. They will be maintained only so long as their presence has the consent and encouragement of the Governments of Malaysia and Singapore and is seen by them as a contribution to security. They will not be involved in internal security problems and their deployment on active operations will require the express consent of the New Zealand Government.
New Zealand Aid—New Zealand's aid to developing countries takes many forms—capital aid (cash grants and equipment), technical assistance (the provision of experts and student training), food aid, and loans. It is channelled through a number of diverse programmes; multilateral, bilateral, and non-governmental.
New Zealand has for many years played an active role in multilateral schemes initiated by the United Nations and its specialised agencies, e.g., the United Nations Development Programme, the World Food Programme, the United Nations Children's Fund, and the programmes of aid to refugees.
The largest individual bilateral programme is the Colombo Plan, the main vehicle for the New Zealand Government's civil aid to South and South-East Asia. Other bilateral programmes undertaken by New Zealand include those involving the Cook Islands, Niue Island, the Tokelau Islands, and Western Samoa. Bilateral aid to Asia under the Colombo Plan amounted to $3,645,535 in the 1969-70 financial year while aid to the islands of the south-west Pacific totalled $4,073,000.
Contributions to the Asian Development Bank amounted to $1,007,000 in the 1969-70 financial year and formed an important adjunct to New Zealand's bilateral aid to Asia.
Other programmes in which the New Zealand Government participates include the Special Commonwealth African Assistance Plan under which African students are brought to New Zealand for higher education and special training courses; the Commonwealth Education Scheme under which students and scholars from developing countries study in New Zealand; the Commonwealth Medical Scheme and the Commonwealth Programme for Technical Co-operation.
New Zealand and the Colombo Plan—New Zealand was a foundation member of the Colombo Plan which had its origin in and takes its name from a meeting of Commonwealth Foreign Ministers held in January 1950 in Colombo to exchange views on world problems, particularly on the economic needs of the countries of South and South-East Asia. The Colombo Plan is not a single plan but rather an aggregation of a series of separate plans drawn up and administered by each country in the region: the external assistance required and made available to help implement these plans is negotiated on a bilateral basis. What was once a Commonwealth idea has grown into a truly international co-operative effort with 24 member countries.
Up to 31 March 1970, New Zealand has made available under the Colombo Plan capital aid and technical assistance amounting to $38,492,621.
The major capital aid projects with which New Zealand has been associated in 1969-70 include dairy schemes in India, a road building programme in north-east Thailand, school buildings at Rajang and Likas in Malaysia, the Indus Basin Development Scheme in Pakistan, the Nam Ngum Dam in Laos, and the provision of cattle to Korea and Ceylon. Total expenditure on capital aid has amounted to $23,461,513, including $1,852,176 in the 1969-70 financial year.
Up to 31 March 1970 New Zealand had spent a total of $9,620,442 on student training and $5,410,666 on the provision of experts, advisers, and consultants. The number of students and trainees brought to New Zealand under Colombo Plan awards had reached 2,916, of whom 556 were in New Zealand on 31 March 1970. The number of experts who have served in Asia under the Colombo Plan had reached 468 by the same date. Major technical assistance projects overseas include the provision of a road construction team in north-east Thailand, a civilian surgical team in Vietnam, and teachers for Malaysia. Increasing use is being made of New Zealand architectural, engineering, and other services under the Colombo Plan and a number of new projects involving participation by the private sector of the New Zealand economy were approved in 1969-70.
Volunteer Service Abroad—The Council for Volunteer Service Abroad, although a non-governmental organisation, receives government assistance in carrying out its programme of dispatching volunteer workers for assignments in many Asian and Pacific countries. At 31 March 1970 there were 123 volunteers in the field. The government grant to VSA during the 1969-70 year was $64,650.
Distribution of New Zealand Aid—The distribution of New Zealand Government aid to overseas countries during the 1969-70 financial year is set out in the following table. The aid is shown as bilateral where the arrangements were concluded directly between the New Zealand Government and the Government of the recipient country or countries and multi-lateral where the aid was contributed to an international agency or fund. The table lists only government aid. It docs not take into account the substantial aid given privately in cash and kind through CORSO and other private organisations.
|Bilateral Assistance—||NZ $(000)|
|Training Scheme—Cook, Niue, Tokelau Islands||105|
|Other South Pacific technical assistance||12|
|South Pacific airports (excluding Rarotonga)||131|
|South and South-east Asia—|
|SEATO Aid Fund||20|
|Ministry of Defence Contributions—|
|Road Construction Team, Thailand||110|
|Services Medical Team, Vietnam||115|
|Commonwealth Education Scheme||105|
|Commonwealth Medical Scheme||39|
|Commonwealth Programme for Technical Co-operation||5|
|Volunteer Service Abroad||65|
|Total bilateral assistance||8,368|
|United Nations Development Programme||450|
|United Nations Children Fund||120|
|United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees||20|
|United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees||60|
|World Food Programme||224|
|South Pacific Commission||142|
|International Red Cross||6|
|Convertible currency subscription to Asian Development Bank||1,007|
|Total multilateral assistance||2,029|
|Other Official Flows—|
|World Bank Bonds||4,465|
|Total other official flows||4,465|
General Aims—It is clear that, as New Zealand has assumed the international responsibilities appropriate to an independent country, its foreign policy has changed in emphasis and scope. The foundations of New Zealand's pre-war position in international affairs—its identification with Britain and its membership of the Commonwealth—have been modified and extended to meet the demands of an international situation greatly changed from that of 1939. As a country of predominantly European settlement, New Zealand retains its traditional loyalties to the United Kingdom and a sense of identity with Europe and of involvement in its destiny. As a Pacific power, it has sought security in friendship and formal defensive arrangements with Australia and the United States of America. New Zealand's growing involvement in the problems of the South Pacific region and its close ties with the island people are giving rise to a new recognition of the importance of the role it will have to play in this area in the future. New Zealand is in a unique position to encourage the growth of a regional consciousness in the South Pacific which is essential if the problems of the area are to be seen and tackled as a whole. At the same time it has recognised the importance of regional developments in Asia and the future security of that region, and has sought to develop its associations with Asian countries. As a country concerned with the preservation of world peace and the organisation of defence against aggression it has placed prime importance upon development of the United Nations as an agency for peaceful settlement of international disputes and for the achievement of collective security. Pending the establishment of a broadly based United Nations security system, however, New Zealand has been prepared, in respect of South-East Asia, to participate in a protective grouping concerned with the defence of a single area. Moreover, while it sees aggressive Communism as the greatest threat to individual liberty at the present time, it is well aware of the powerful stirrings of other forces—the yearning for political emancipation, the antagonism to systems of racial discrimination, the demand of underprivileged countries for a greater share of the world's prosperity, or social advancement and opportunity. New Zealand's actions in the international field are designed to take account of these forces and, where possible, to assist the people of other countries in their striving for a better life. The limits of what it is able to do are those imposed by its size and capacity; its disposition is towards peaceful and friendly relations with all nations and (whatever the modifications which the needs of national security may impose) it is to that ultimate goal that its foreign policy is directed.
CONSTITUTION OF NEW ZEALAND: General—New Zealand is a monarchical State; it is also a constituent member of the Commonwealth. It is in this context that the preamble to the Royal Titles Act 1953 is significant “. . . whereas it is expedient that the style and titles at present appertaining to the Crown should be altered so as to reflect more clearly the existing relationships of the Members of the Commonwealth to one another and their recognition of the Crown as the Symbol of their free association and of the Sovereign as the Head of the Commonwealth . . .”
Constitutional elements besides that of the titular head, the Monarch, can be reviewed under the categories of legislative authority, the executive and administrative structure, and the judiciary. This division is a convenient one, even though there is no absolute line of demarcation between the three phases (e.g., legislation may and often does arise through the day-to-day experience of those responsible for administration and execution of policy, or through difficulties or anomalies made explicit in the course of dispensing justice or interpreting law). Conversely, in the exercise of the powers and functions of industrial and other tribunals, commissions, authorities, etc., both administrative and judicial elements may be discerned.
THE MONARCH—The New Zealand Parliament in the Royal Titles Act 1953 gave its assent to the use of the Royal style and titles as follows: Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Her Other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith.
While the seat of the Monarch is normally in the United Kingdom, the Queen is represented in New Zealand by the Governor-General appointed by the Crown on the advice of Her New Zealand Ministers. The Governor-General has, however, an official existence, even in the country to which he has been appointed, only in the absence of the Queen from that country. In the island territories the Crown is represented by the Resident Commissioner or Resident Agent. These officials carry out the constitutional functions of the Crown, but they also possess in varying degrees certain executive and legislative powers, being responsible to the New Zealand Government for the administration and good government of the islands concerned.
Many powers held by the Monarch (or her representative) comprise but the means of giving effect to the public will. In New Zealand the Governor-General acts on the advice of the Ministers, which cannot constitutionally be ignored. Despite the long-term trend for powers to be assigned directly to Ministers without any necessity for vice-regal consultation, there are still many phases of Government which require Royal participation.
The Queen (in her absence the Governor-General) gives consent or approval prior to a Minister taking office or the formation of a Ministry; summons, prorogues, and dissolves Parliament; delivers the Speech from the Throne at the opening of a session; gives the Royal Assent to measures which have passed all stages in the House of Representatives, without which they have not the force of laws; makes appointments to most important State offices; confers knighthoods and other honours, etc.; and also provides that background of stability, continuity, and experience in many facets of government which is so desirable whenever there are sweeping changes in the dominance of political parties.
Besides those duties associated with the constitutional role, the Royal personage or representative makes an important contribution to the ceremonial life of the nation. This was particularly well illustrated during the sojourn of the Royal visitors in New Zealand in 1953-54 and in 1963. Both as the symbol of the nation and in virtue of her identification with the life and interests of her people, the Queen becomes the focus for all State occasions, as does the Governor-General in her absence.
LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY—The supreme law-making body with power to legislate for the whole country is the General Assembly, which now consists of the Governor-General and the House of Representatives, the former Legislative Council having been abolished since the close of 1950.
The powers of Parliament to make laws are legally untrammelled. This was not always so, for prior to the adoption by New Zealand to the Statute of Westminster in 1947 there was incapacity to make laws on certain matters which conflicted with United Kingdom statutes extending to New Zealand. There was also some doubt as to New Zealand's power to make laws possessing extra-territorial effect.
Although they do not limit the legal powers of Parliament as stated earlier, the provisions of the Electoral Act 1956 creating reserved sections in that Act are of great constitutional significance. The Act provides that certain of its sections may not be repealed except by a 75 percent majority of the House of Representatives or following a referendum. These sections are those relating to:
The constitution and order of reference of the Representation Commission.
The number of European electoral districts and the basing of their boundaries on the total population.
The fixing of the tolerance within which the Commission must work at 5 percent.
The age of voting.
The secret ballot.
The duration of Parliament.
This innovation is not legally effective in the sense that it does not prevent a subsequent Parliament from repealing it, since one Parliament cannot bind its successors. It should not be thought, however, that the provision is a mere gesture. It records the unanimous agreement of both parties represented in Parliament that certain provisions have a fundamental character in the system of Government and should not be altered at the whim of a bare majority. Considered in this light the provision creating reserved sections introduces something in the nature of a formal convention which could not constitutionally be ignored.
While the law-making function is the prerogative of Parliament, it must be remembered that, as in most democracies, laws are passed because of their acceptability to the majority party in Parliament—i.e., the Government party. Furthermore the initial acceptance will have probably been made in the deliberations of Cabinet.
With the increasing range and complexity of the statutory field, the multifarious concerns of a modern twentieth century government, and the necessity of conserving time for consideration of more important issues, much of the detailed procedural steps and other amplifying matter must become the subject of regulations made by Order in Council under the authority of some statute, rather than being incorporated in the statute itself. The power to make such regulations lies with the Executive Council which comprises those senior members of the majority party in Parliament who are appointed thereto, together with the Governor-General. Regulations, though originating in Cabinet and becoming effective in the formal proceedings of the Executive Council, rest fundamentally on the will of Parliament as a whole and are now subject to its supervisory jurisdiction. A general provision contained in the Regulations Amendment Act 1962 requires all such regulations to be laid before Parliament, though most empowering Acts contained a similar provision prior to that date. An amendment to the Standing Orders of the House of Representatives, also passed in 1962, enables the House or any member thereof to refer any regulation to the Statutes Revision Committee, a Select Committee of the House, which is empowered to consider the regulation and to determine whether the special attention of the House should be drawn to it on any of the following grounds: (a) That it trespasses unduly on personal rights and liberties: (b) That it appears to make some unusual or unexpected use of the powers conferred by the statute under which it is made: (c) That for any special reason its form or purport calls for elucidation.
Meeting of Parliament—Parliament is summoned, prorogued, or dissolved by Proclamation issued by the Governor-General. A session is that period between the summoning of Parliament and its prorogation. Its length varies, but it usually occupies the months from June to November. When Parliament is prorogued all the business on hand lapses, and if this is to be proceeded with in the next session it must be re-introduced.
The course of a session may be interrupted by an adjournment.
Parliamentary Privileges—While in session these include freedom of speech and freedom from arrest in civil cases, and also the right to engage in secret debate, if required, etc.
The Party System—The two main political parties represented in Parliament are National and Labour. A third party—Social Credit—obtained a seat for the first time at the 1966 General Election but lost it at the 1969 election. At any general election these parties, together with any other political parties which may be desirous of so doing and also those candidates standing as independants, state their respective policies before the electors. Each party normally puts forward one candidate for each of the 84 electorates into which the country is divided. The party which wins the majority of seats, although not necessarily the majority of votes, at the general election forms the Government. The leader of the elected members of the majority party becomes the Prime Minister, who makes Ministerial appointments from elected members of his party. The leader of the minority party in Parliament becomes the Leader of the Opposition. The effectiveness of the party system relies largely on the general agreement that the majority party is to govern and the minority is to criticise—so that there is ample time allocated for debate on Government measures in Parliament. While party control is exercised by national and local organisations outside Parliament, within the latter it is maintained by the respective party whips.
Parliamentary Procedure—The House of Representatives has its Standing Orders, which govern its procedure and which are administered by Mr Speaker in the exercise of his control of the House. Mr Speaker's rulings on interpretation of the Standing Orders are followed in a similar manner to judicial decisions in the ordinary Courts of law. The main means by which Parliament does its work is through the system of debate and committees. The election of a Speaker is the first business of a new House after the members have been sworn. A Chairman of Committees is elected as soon afterwards as is convenient. Twenty members, inclusive of the Speaker, constitute a quorum.
Parliamentary Functions and Control—The Parliament controls the Government in power in the last resort by its power to pass a resolution of no confidence in the Government, or to reject a proposal which the Government considers so necessary that it is made a matter of confidence, and thus force the Government to resign.
Financial control is exercised by the fact that expenditure of public money must be authorised by the House of Representatives in the form of an Appropriation Act, which authorises or grants money to the Government for the purposes approved. The authority for the raising of revenue by taxation or borrowing must also be given by Parliament. The functions of Parliament are, of course, the passing of legislation and taking action to make available finances or funds as required for State expenditure, while it also controls the Government. Legislation can be initiated by any member of Parliament, but in practice almost all Bills are introduced by the Government in power as a result of policy taken in Cabinet, sometimes at the instigation of those Government Departments which will be responsible for their administration when the Bills become law. The chief exceptions are private Bills, which are designed for the particular interest or benefit of a person or body of persons, whether incorporated or not, and local Bills which relate largely to matters of local (as distinct from central) government business. The process of passing a public Bill is as follows: it receives a formal first reading on introduction, is then printed, and after some time it is given a second reading as a result of a debate on its general merits or principles. It may then be referred to one of the Select Committees, for consideration in the closest detail, before being considered by the whole House sitting in Committee. During these stages members have opportunities to suggest amendments which may be incorporated in the Bill if the majority so decide. The Bill is then reported to the House, and later read a third time; debate rarely occurs at these stages. The final stage is to send the Bill to the Governor-General for the Royal Assent and, unless provision is made for commencement on another date, it then becomes law. Bills providing for receipt of moneys, such as the Finance Bill, and expenditure of moneys, such as the Appropriation Bill, are introduced only by a Minister of the Crown, normally the Minister of Finance. No Bill involving an appropriation of public moneys or affecting the rights of the Crown can be passed without the recommendation of the Crown, which is given by Message from the Governor-General.
Duration of Parliaments—Quinquennial Parliaments, instituted under the Constitution Act, were abolished by the Triennial Parliaments Act 1879, which fixed the term at three years. General elections have been held at three-yearly intervals since 1881, with a few exceptions. The term of the nineteenth Parliament was during the First World War extended to five years by special legislation, and that of the twenty-fourth (1931-35) and subsequent Parliaments to four years under the Electoral Amendment Act 1934. By the Electoral Amendment Act 1937 the three-year term was restored, but on account of war conditions the term of the twenty-sixth Parliament was extended to four years by the Prolongation of Parliament Act 1941. The Prolongation of Parliament Act 1942 extended the term still further to one year from the termination of the war, but with a proviso for a motion to be moved in the House of Representatives each year after the year 1942 either approving the continuation of the House or fixing an earlier date for its expiry. During the 1943 session a motion in favour of dissolution was carried, and Parliament was dissolved on 30 August 1943. Since then the duration of Parliaments has been of three years, with the exception that the twenty-ninth Parliament was dissolved after the expiration of approximately 20 months. The three-year limit was re-enacted in the Electoral Act 1956, this being one of the reserved provisions referred to earlier. A referendum on 23 September 1967 favoured the continuation of terms of three years.
Number of Representatives—There are 84 electorates (80 European and four Maori) returning members to the House of Representatives. The number was originally fixed by the Constitution Act as not more than 42 and not less than 24, and the first Parliament called together in 1854 consisted of 37 members. Legislation passed in 1858 fixed the number of European members at 41; in 1860, at 53; in 1862, at 57; in 1865, at 70; in 1867, at 72; in 1870, at 74; in 1875, at 84; in 1881, at 91; in 1887, at 70; in 1900, at 76; and in 1969 at 80. Since 1867 there have been four Maori representatives, and provision for this number was retained in the Electoral Act 1956. In 1954 the boundaries of the Maori electoral districts, which had remained unaltered since 1867, were changed by Proclamation so as to give a greater degree of equality of population among the four districts (in effect the Southern Maori Electoral District now includes a considerable area of the North Island). The Electoral Amendment Act 1965 fixed the number of European electorates in the South Island at 25 (an increase of one) and provided that the number of European electorates in the North Island shall be ascertained by the Representation Commission after each quinquennial census of population on the basis of the quota fixed for the South Island. In 1967 the Commission considered the results of the 1966 census and fixed the number of electorates in the North Island at 55 (an increase of three). Thus there were 84 electorates for the general election in 1969.
Qualifications of Members—Under the Electoral Act 1956 every registered elector of either sex, but no other person, is qualified to be a parliamentary candidate. It is provided, however, that a person shall not be so elected who is disqualified as an elector under any of the provisions of the Act (see under “Franchise” later); or is an undischarged bankrupt; or is a contractor to the Public Service of New Zealand to whom any public money above the sum of $400 is payable, directly or indirectly (but not as a member of a registered company or incorporated body), in any one financial year. If a public servant is elected to Parliament he must vacate his office forthwith and he cannot resume employment in the Public Service within 12 months of ceasing to be a member of Parliament unless he had previously been a public servant for at least five years.
Salaries, etc.—Section 27 of the Civil List Act 1950 provides that on the recommendation of a Royal Commission the Governor-General may from time to time, by Order in Council, fix the salaries and allowances to be paid to the Prime Minister and other Ministers of the Crown or members of the Executive Council, to Parliamentary Under-Secretaries, and to the Speaker and Chairman of Committees and other members of the House of Representatives, and that a Royal Commission shall be appointed for this purpose within three months after the date of every general election of members of Parliament. At April in the intervening years adjustments are made on a basis matching that for the State Services Remuneration and Conditions of Employment Act 1969; the Government Statistician provides the Prime Minister with a certificate specifying the percentage movements in average weekly ordinary time earnings outside the State Services (as ascertained from the April half-yearly survey of industries in the private sector conducted by the Department of Labour) and adjustments may be made by Order-in-Council to the salaries of Ministers and members.
The following table sets out the salaries and allowances payable from 1 April 1970 in accordance with the recommendations of the Royal Commission upon Parliamentary Salaries and Allowances 1970.
*Where the ministerial office of Minister of Foreign Affairs is held by a Minister other than the Prime Minister an additional allowance would be paid.
†Additional to normal allowance as member.
|Deputy Prime Minister||12,500||1,625|
|Minister with Portfolio||11,250||1,500*|
|Minister without Portfolio||8,650||1,275|
|Chairman of Committees||7,750||700†|
|Leader of the Opposition||10,500||1,500|
|Deputy Leader of the Opposition||6,850||575†|
There is an additional allowance depending on classification of electorates: (a) Electorates which are wholly urban, $90; (b) Electorates which are substantially urban, $230; (c) Electorates which are partially urban and partially rural, $520; (d) Electorates which are ordinary rural, $920; (e) Electorates which are predominantly rural, $1,150. The special additional allowance for Southern Maori electorate is $350 and for each of the other Maori electorates is $175. The daily sessional allowance is $3 and the night allowance for members entitled thereto is $8. In addition to the salary and allowances, members are entitled to certain travel concessions and a stamp allowance.
Former Prime Ministers receive an annual payment of $400 for each full year in office, with a maximum of $2,000 a year, after retirement, defeat at the polls, or when a member only. This is subject to a two-year minimum period having been served as Prime Minister.
Under the Superannuation Act 1956 there is a compulsory contributory superannuation scheme for members of the House of Representatives. The scheme provides that a retiring allowance shall be payable to a member after nine years' service and the attainment of 50 years of age, and shall be calculated at the rate of one thirty-second of the basic salary for a member as at the date of his ceasing to be a member, for each year of service with a maximum of two-thirds of that basic salary, or alternatively the member may elect to take a variable retiring allowance so as to secure a level income, or he may elect to receive a refund of his contributions. The annual contribution is 11 percent of an ordinary member's salary, and the Government subsidises the fund. The rate of contribution was increased by 1 percent from 1 April 1970 to provide for cost-of-living adjustments to be made to retiring allowances. In the case of a male member dying and leaving a widow surviving she becomes entitled during her widowhood to receive an annuity of half of the retiring allowance to which her husband would have been entitled had he retired aged 60 years at the time of his death, or $260 a year, whichever is the greater.
ADMINISTRATION AND EXECUTIVE RESPONSIBILITY—After the election of a new Parliament, it is the responsibility of the leader of the party, which is most likely to secure and retain the support of the majority of members in the House, to form a Government. Although procedures for the selection of new Ministers have varied between the two principal parties, the Prime Minister has the final responsibility for allocating portfolios. A portfolio comprises a specific field of Government activity—for instance all matters relating to education will be allocated to one Minister who is henceforth known as the Minister of Education.
A Minister may have more than one portfolio and in addition responsibility for the supervision of one or more Government departments in which the activities carried out, though important, do not rank as portfolios. Occasionally a Minister is appointed without portfolio, as in 1969 when the Associate Minister of Finance had no portfolio responsibility.
Executive Council—In the legal sense those members of Parliament who have been appointed Ministers comprise the Executive Council. The Governor-General normally presides over meetings of the Council. The powers, duties, and responsibilities of the Governor-General and the Executive Council under the present system of responsible government are set out in Royal Letters Patent and Instructions thereunder of 11 May 1917, published in the New Zealand Gazette of 24 April 1919. The Royal Powers Act 1953 provides that the statutory powers conferred on the Governor-General may be exercised either by Her Majesty the Queen in person or by the Governor-General. In the execution of the powers and authorities vested in him the Governor-General must be guided by the advice of the Executive Council; but, if in any case he sees sufficient cause to dissent from the opinion of the Council, he may act in the exercise of his powers and authorities in opposition to the opinion of the Council, reporting the matter to Her Majesty without delay, with the reasons for his so acting.
In any such case any member of the Executive Council may require that there be recorded in the minutes of the Council the grounds of any advice or opinion that he may give upon the question.
A point of interest is that the Civil List Act 1950, in section 6, provided that no person shall be appointed a Minister or a member of the Executive Council unless he is a member of Parliament and that a person who ceases to be a member of Parliament cannot continue to be a Minister or a member of the Executive Council for more than 21 days. This gave statutory recognition for the first time to what had long been the convention.
At January 1971 the Executive Council consisted of 18 members. Two members, exclusive of His Excellency or the presiding member, constitute a quorum.
Under the Civil List Act 1950 and its amendments, His Excellency the Governor-General receives a salary of $19,500, and an allowance of $12,000 a year for the salaries and expenses of his personal establishment, plus all expenditure incurred in respect of the transport to and from New Zealand and the travel within or outside New Zealand of the Governor-General and his family and staff.
Cabinet—The membership of the Executive Council and Cabinet is identical but Cabinet, unlike the Executive Council, is not a body created by any legal document. The existence of Cabinet was not recognised by Statute until a passing reference was made in the Parliamentary Commissioner (Ombudsman) Act 1962.
The fact that the Juridical Acts to give legal force to certain of the decisions of Cabinet are taken by others—the Crown, the Executive Council, a Minister of the Crown or a Statutory Commission—does not diminish the power and authority of Cabinet.Cabinet is the top committee of the administrative system, with responsibility for coordinating the work of the various Ministers and taking those decisions which largely determine the nature of the legislation put before Parliament and the regulations which the Executive Council is asked to approve.
Cabinet discussions are informal and confidential, anonymity being maintained as to the individual advocacy or opposition to particular proposals. The Cabinet system enables general agreement to be reached on any line of action proposed by either an individual Minister or by the Government as a whole. As a result the Executive Council confirmation can proceed smoothly and expeditiously. In Parliament a Minister can be confident that his legislative or other proposals will have the unqualified support of the Government no matter what divergences of opinion may have been apparent before general agreement was reached in Cabinet. A consistent and agreed course of action on any particular issue can be determined. The work of Cabinet thus exemplifies the concept of the collective responsibility of the Government.
Certain questions are considered by committees of Cabinet, the membership of which includes those Ministers primarily concerned with the subject matters. Authority to determine some issues may be delegated to a Cabinet committee by Cabinet. In other cases a committee may be called upon to study a particular question and submit its recommendations to Cabinet for determination. Some Cabinet committees are established on a permanent basis for the consideration of matters arising in broad fields of Government policy. Examples are the Cabinet Economic Committee and the Cabinet Works Committee. Several of these committees are supported by inter-departmental committees of officials. Other committees are of a temporary nature; they are established to consider particular problems and after having studied the question in detail, normally with appropriate officials advising, the committee reports back to Cabinet with its recommendations; and after the final decision has been made by Cabinet, the committee's work is completed.
The Cabinet Secretariat is responsible for the servicing of Cabinet and its committees to ensure their smooth functioning.
Government Departments—The Minister as the political head of a Department of State may in fact have several Departments under his control. There are, however, some 40 different Departments with separate functions in New Zealand. Each of these have a permanent head who is responsible for the work and administration of the Department. He is of course responsible to the Minister in charge of the Department, while he also acts as adviser to the Minister on all matters within his appointed competence. Besides ensuring that the ministerial policy and directions communicated to him are effectively put into practice, his functions as the adviser include assessing the consequences of any executive action resulting from his departmental activity, evaluating the merits and demerits, whether political, social, or financial, of various modes of action, and making suggestions for improvements and for new policy measures as derived from departmental experience in the day-to-day execution of policy.
Departments can be broadly classified according to the administrative or regulatory, developmental, or social nature of their activities. Within the first group are the servicing subgroup, such as the Legislative, Prime Minister's, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Printing Office, Law Drafting, Valuation, Statistics, and Audit; the finance subgroup—Treasury, Customs, Inland Revenue; the regulatory subgroup—State Services Commission, Internal Affairs, Labour, Marine; the defence and law and order subgroup—Ministry of Defence, Justice, Crown Law, and Police; the publicity and research subgroup—Tourist and Publicity, Scientific and Industrial Research.
In the second group are the transport and communications subgroup, such as Ministry of Transport, Post Office, and Railways; the developmental—Ministry of Works, Agriculture, Lands and Survey, Forest Service, Mines, Electricity, Maori and Island Affairs, and Industries and Commerce; the commercial—Public Trust, Government Life Insurance, State Advances Corporation, and State Insurance.
The third group comprises the Education, Health, and Social Security Departments.
This broad division serves merely to indicate the field of the dominant activity or purpose of the particular Department. Most Departments have servicing, informative, and regulatory functions, and many are equally regulatory and developmental in nature.
In addition to the system of direct administration in the form of Government Departments, there are other activities over which the State exercises some ultimate measure of control or ownership, though divorced in varying degrees from immediate supervision. The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (the central bank), and one trading bank, are entirely State-owned, although the actual administration is quite independent, subject in the case of the Reserve Bank to the proviso that it must give effect to the monetary policy of the Government, as communicated to the bank by the Minister of Finance, and to any resolution of Parliament in respect of Government monetary policy.
Further instances of this principle are shown by the National Airways Corporation, which, although owned by the State, is administratively self-contained, and by the Tourist Hotel Corporation. In certain other avenues the type of administration is in between the normal departmental form and that evident in the corporation type; of such is the National Roads Board, which, though determining policy to a large degree, yet makes use of departmental administrative structures for implementation of policy.
Some administrative organisations have also quasi-judicial functions. Examples of this class are the Price Tribunal, Transport Charges Authority, Licensing Control Commission, and Local Government Commission.
JUDICIARY—The hierarchy of Courts in New Zealand comprises the Court of Appeal, the Supreme Court, and the Magistrate's Court. Apart from these Courts of general jurisdiction there are other Courts dealing with specific fields. In the latter category are the Court of Arbitration concerned with awards and general orders governing wage determination and conditions of employment in industry; the Compensation Court dealing with workers' compensation. For further details refer to Section 8 (Justice) of this issue.
ELECTORAL PROVISIONS—The law on these matters is now contained in the Electoral Act 1956. Following each population census, which is normally taken every five years, the boundaries of European electorates are revised. In addition, there are four Maori electoral districts, three in the North Island and one covering a portion of the North Island together with the whole of the South Island, where the Maori population is comparatively small. The Governor-General may at any time by Proclamation alter the boundaries of the Maori electoral districts, and, as in the case of European electoral districts, any alterations are to come into force at the expiry of the Parliament existing when the Proclamation is issued.
The Government Statistician is required to supply population figures to the Surveyor-General as soon as possible after the census. The population used as the basis in obtaining the quota for each European electoral district is defined in section 2 (1) of the Electoral Act 1956.
The term “European population” means total population with the following exceptions:
Persons residing on board ship, whether as passengers or members of the crew or otherwise:
Persons residing temporarily as guests in any licensed hotel:
Persons residing temporarily in any naval, military, or air force camp, station, or establishment:
Persons residing as patients and inmates in any hospital:
Persons in respect of whom reception orders under the Mental Health Act 1969 are in force:
Persons detained pursuant to convictions in any penal institution.
After the population figures are supplied by the Government Statistician it is then the responsibility of the Representation Commission to define new electoral districts for Europeans. The Commission is constituted by virtue of section 15 of the Electoral Act 1956 and comprises seven members. Four of these, the Surveyor-General, the Government Statistician, the Chief Electoral Officer, and the Director-General of the Post Office, are official members. Two are unofficial members, being persons nominated by the House of Representatives, one nominated to represent the Government, and one to represent the Opposition. The seventh member is appointed, on the nomination of the official and unofficial members of the Commission or a majority of them, to be the Chairman of the Commission. The Chairman and unofficial members cease to be members on the date on which the first periodical census is taken after the date of their appointment.
The European population of the South Island is divided by 25 and the quotient so obtained is the quota for the South Island. Then the European population of the North Island is divided by the quota for the South Island, and the quotient so obtained is the number of European electoral districts in the North Island. In applying the quota the Commission may make an allowance by way of addition or subtraction of 5 percent of the quota to enable districts to be adjusted to meet considerations of topography, community of interest, communications, and existing electoral boundaries.
When the boundaries have been provisionally determined, maps are prepared illustrating the proposed electoral districts, and descriptions of each electoral district are published in the New Zealand Gazette. A time limit of one month is given during which objections to the proposed boundaries may be lodged. These objections are then considered by the Representation Commission and a final decision reached on boundaries which then become the new electoral districts.
In addition to determining new European electoral districts the Representation Commission is also charged with the responsibility of classifying them for the purpose of allowances as provided by the current Parliamentary Salaries and Allowances Order. Under this order provision is made for an allowance based on the size, topography, and transport facilities of the electorate, the nature of its roads, the distribution of its population, and all other considerations that the Commission deems relevant.
The Act provides that all general elections and by-elections shall be held on a Saturday and for both European and Maori elections to be held on the same day. Polling hours in all electorates are from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The Act provides that, if at any time Parliament is dissolved before it has been two years in existence, the main and supplementary rolls used in the previous general election, together with a further supplementary roll, may be used if in the opinion of the Chief Electoral Officer it is impracticable to print new main rolls. The same rolls, together with a further supplementary roll, are to be used for any by-election occurring before the next following general election.
Provision is made for the voting at elections and licensing polls by servicemen serving overseas, who are or will be of, or over the age of, 20 years before the date of the election or poll, whether or not registered as electors of any electoral district. Each such serviceman shall be qualified to vote as an elector of the electoral district in which he last resided before he left New Zealand.
FRANCHISEE—Since 1969, persons 20 years of age and over have had the right to vote in the election of members of the House of Representatives. (From 1893 onwards all persons aged 21 years had voting rights.) Some of the more important provisions of the Electoral Act 1956 are now given.
Qualification for Registration as Elector—To be qualified for registration as a parliamentary elector in New Zealand a person must have attained the age of 20 years and must (a) be a British subject or Irish citizen, (b) be ordinarily resident in New Zealand, (c) at some period have resided continuously in New Zealand for at least a year, and (d) except in special cases have resided continuously for three months or more in the electoral district in respect of which application for registration is made, and not have subsequently resided for three months or more in any other electoral district.
The Act defines what is meant by the term “ordinarily resident”. To be ordinarily resident in New Zealand, a person must be or have been actually resident in New Zealand with the intention of residing there indefinitely. If he is absent from New Zealand he must have had, even since he left New Zealand, an intention to return to reside there indefinitely, and (except in the case of a public servant or the wife or husband of a public servant) must not have been absent from New Zealand for more than three years. Broadly speaking, the qualifications restrict the right to vote to permanent residents, the test laid down being similar to the legal concept of domicile.
The following persons are disqualified from registration as electors: (a) Those in respect of whom reception orders under the Mental Health Act 1969 are in force, (b) those detained pursuant to a conviction in any penal institution, and (c) those whose names are on the Corrupt Practices List for any district.
These qualifications and disqualifications apply alike to Maoris and Europeans.
Registration of Electors—A system of compulsory registration of electors has been in operation in respect of Europeans since 1924 and was introduced in respect of Maoris in 1948. Every person qualified to be registered as an elector of any district must, if he is in New Zealand, apply for registration within one month after the date on which he first becomes qualified to be registered as an elector. He must also apply for registration within three months after the issue of every Proclamation proclaiming the names and boundaries of electoral districts or within such later period as may be provided by Order in Council. Qualified electors who are outside New Zealand may apply for registration if they wish.
A European is not entitled to be registered as an elector of a Maori district and a Maori (other than a half-caste) is not entitled to be registered as an elector of a European district. A half-caste Maori may choose to be registered either for a Maori or European district, and special rules are laid down to govern a change from one to the other.
Voting at Elections—Voting at parliamentary elections is by secret ballot, a method which was first introduced in New Zealand in 1870. Recognition of the fundamental character which the secret ballot has attained in New Zealand was given in the Electoral Act 1956, which included the section providing for this method of voting among the reserved sections which may be repealed only by a 75 percent majority vote of all the members of the House of Representatives or following a referendum.
In general, only those persons whose names are lawfully on the main and supplementary rolls of electors compiled prior to an election may vote at that election. The following classes of persons whose names are not on the roll are, however, entitled to vote:
Those who have applied for registration between writ day and polling day and have satisfied the Registrar that they became qualified for registration not earlier than one month before writ day.
Those who are qualified for registration and were at the last preceding election registered in that district or, where boundary changes have intervened, in some other district in which their then residence within the first-mentioned district was then situated.
Those who are qualified for registration and have since the last election and before 6 p.m. on writ day applied for registration in that district, or where boundary changes have intervened, in some other district in which their then residence within the first-mentioned district was then situated.
Servicemen outside New Zealand, if they are or will be 20 years of age or more on polling day and their place of residence before they left New Zealand is within the district.
Special Voters—A vote is normally cast by the elector at a polling booth within his district. An elector may, however, vote as a “special voter”, either at a polling booth outside his district or by post, in the following cases:
If his name does not appear on the main roll, or any supplementary roll for the district, or has been wrongly deleted from the roll.
If he will be outside New Zealand on polling day.
If he is or will be absent from the district on polling day.
If he will not be within 2 miles by the nearest practicable route of any polling place in the district during the hours of polling.
If he will be travelling during the hours of polling under conditions which will preclude him from voting at a polling place in the district.
If he is ill or infirm.
If, in the case of a woman, she is precluded from attending at a polling place by reason of approaching or recent maternity.
If he is a lighthouse keeper or a member of a lighthouse keeper's staff, or if she is the wife of a lighthouse keeper or of one of his staff.
If he has a religious objection to voting on the day of the week on which polling day falls.
If he satisfies the Returning Officer or Deputy Returning Officer that on any other ground he cannot vote at a polling place in the district without hardship or undue inconvenience.
These special votes replace the former classes of absentee, postal, and declaration votes, including servicemen outside New Zealand.
LOCAL GOVERNMENT—In 1876, following the abolition of the provinces, local government assumed the form it still basically retains. The Counties Act of 1876 divided the country into 63 counties, with provision for administration by elective councils having powers considerably less than those enjoyed by the Provincial Councils. In the same year the Municipal Corporations Act provided for the incorporation of the 36 boroughs then in existence and for the creation of new boroughs.
A description of the development of counties, boroughs, and town districts follows.
Counties—Counties are now constituted under the Counties Act 1956, which consolidated legislation relating to counties and road districts. In general, the county organisation makes provision for the primary needs of a scattered population within a large area. With increasing settlement the original 63 counties were gradually subdivided until in 1920 the maximum of 129 was reached, although the number of councils formed and actively functioning never exceeded 126. The number of counties has been reduced by amalgamations and mergers by the Local Government Commission. At April 1970 there were 109 counties constituted, of which 108 were actively functioning, Fiord being a sparsely populated county in which the Counties Act is not wholly in force. The Local Government Commission operates under the Local Government Commission Act 1967.
County councils may, under the provisions of the Counties Act 1956, declare areas within counties to be county towns. To qualify, the areas concerned must have a population of at least 200, with an average density of not less than one person to the acre or not less than 60 houses with an average density of not less than one house to three acres. After the constitution of a county town the county council is required to appoint a county town committee of not less than three nor more than seven members, to advise it on the administration of the county town. The Counties Amendment Act 1968 contains provisions for the constitution of county boroughs. This is a new unit of local government which can only be formed from an existing county town or borough or town district. It remains an integral part of the parent county, but the county borough council, which is a fully elected body, has a statutory right to exercise some, but not all, the powers of the county council within the district of the county borough. The minimum population required for a county borough is 1,500.
Boroughs—Dealing with the needs of a concentrated population, the borough organisation is concerned with a wide range of functions of a purely local nature. With the growth and centralisation of population the number of boroughs, despite numerous amalgamations of adjacent boroughs, steadily increased until 1955 when the total was 146. In October 1970 the total was 138.
Under the Municipal Corporations Act 1954 for the constitution of a borough there must be a population of at least 1,500 with an average density of population of at least one person per acre. A borough containing a population of 20,000 or more may be proclaimed a city, although the corporation remains unaltered.
Town Districts—The town district represents a form of local government intermediate between the county and the borough. It implies a certain concentration of population and the presence of interests which, from their purely local nature, cannot be satisfactorily met by the county organisation. In its early stages a town district usually remained subject to county control, although such control was practically confined to the main and county roads in the town district; in such circumstances it was known as a dependent town district. The Town Boards Amendment Act 1908 enabled town districts on reaching a population of more than 500 to become independent. On attaining its independence a town district becomes in all respects a separate entity, and, apart from its smaller population, is not essentially different from a borough. The constitution and powers of town districts have been brought into closer relationship to boroughs over the years, and independent town districts are now constituted under the Municipal Corporations Act 1954. The Act required that the area should not be more than 2 square miles, within which no two points are more than 4 miles distant and with a density of population of not less than one person to the acre. No new dependent town districts can be constituted. The number of town districts in October 1970 was 16 (10 independent and 6 dependent).
General Powers—Local authorities in New Zealand derive their powers from the Acts under which they are constituted, and also from special empowering Acts. In addition to legislation providing for particular types of local authority or for individual local authorities, there are several statutory measures which are more or less applicable to all local authorities, such as the Local Elections and Polls Act 1966 and the Local Authorities Loans Act 1956. For most harbour boards, there is in addition to the general Harbours Act a special Act for each board, which is subordinate to the general Act. Certain types of local authority—urban drainage boards, transport boards, the Auckland Regional Authority, the Auckland Harbour Bridge Authority, the Christchurch-Lyttelton Road Tunnel Authority, and the Waikato Valley Authority—derive their principal powers from special constituting Acts.
Local authorities have general powers of entering into contracts for any of the purposes for which they are constituted; of selling and leasing land; and of taking or purchasing any land which may be necessary or convenient for any public work.
Number of Local Authorities—The number of local authorities actively functioning at 1 April 1970 was 655 made up as follows: County councils, 108; borough (including city) councils, 138; town councils (independent), 10; town councils (dependent), 6; catchment authority, 1; river boards (2 boards also have the power of land-drainage board), 9; catchment boards, 13; catchment commissions, 4; land-drainage boards, 34; electric power boards, 41; water-supply boards, 2; urban drainage boards, 4; transport board, 1; local railway board, 1; museum authority, 1; power and gas boards, 2; nassella tussock boards, 2; harbour bridge authority, 1; road tunnel authority, 1; valley authority, 1; plantation board, 1; underground water authorities, 3; pest destruction boards (separately elected), 163; independent fire boards, 60; independent harbour boards, 17; and hospital boards, 31. Borough and county councils also function as fire authorities in 199 cases, as harbour boards in 9 cases, as underground water authorities in 2 cases and as county pest destruction boards in 40 cases. In addition, there were 22 district councils of the National Roads Board constituted under the National Roads Act 1954. Although these district roads councils are not local authorities in the strict sense of the term they are intimately connected with certain aspects of local government providing an advisory service to the National Roads Board concerning the roading needs and the allocation of national roading funds within their respective districts.
Administratively, boroughs and independent town districts, which are contained within the areas of the several counties, are regarded as separate entities. From an administrative point of view, therefore, the fundamental districts are counties, boroughs, and independent town districts. Upon this foundation a considerable superstructure of districts of other types has been erected. These overlapping districts may be divided into two broad classes, viz: (1) Districts formed from parts of counties, e.g., road districts; and (2) those which are composed of a group of adjacent districts of other types united for a common purpose, e.g., electric power districts.
Franchise—Under the Local Election and Polls Act 1966, elections are held on the second Saturday in October every third year. Enrolment of residential electors is compulsory. On any proposal relating to loans or rates a rate paying or a freehold qualification is necessary. Details of the franchise as it affects each type of local district are now given.
Counties—Any person of 20 years of age and over who possesses either of the following qualifications is entitled to be enrolled on the county electors roll:
Rating qualification, which may be held by any person whose name appears in the valuation roll as the occupier of any rateable property within a riding of the county. One vote is allowed where the rateable value does not exceed $2,000, two votes where the value is greater than $2,000 but not in excess of $4,000 and three votes where the value exceeds $4,000.
Residential qualification, which may be held by a person who is or has the status of a British subject or is an Irish citizen, and who has resided for one year in New Zealand and has had permanent residence of not less than three months in the riding of the county to which the roll relates.
Boroughs—Any person of 20 years of age and over who possesses any of the following qualifications is entitled to enrolment:
Freehold qualification—meaning the beneficial and duly registered ownership of a freehold estate in land of a capital value of not less than $50 situated in the borough, notwithstanding that any other person is the occupier thereof.
Rating qualification, which may be held by any person whose name appears in the valuation roll as the occupier of any rateable property within the borough.
Residential qualification, which may be held by a person who is or has the status of a British subject or is an Irish citizen, and who has resided for one year in New Zealand and who has had permanent residence during the last three months in the borough to which the roll relates.
Town Districts—In independent town districts the franchise is the same as for boroughs, and in dependent town districts the county qualification is necessary.
Pest Destruction Districts—Where the rates of the district are based on the acreage and rateable value of land occupied by the ratepayer, the franchise is the same as that exercised for county council elections. Where the franchise is based on stock ownership, from one to five votes are allowed according to the number of stock units owned. In the case of county pest destruction districts, no separate elections are held as the county council is also the board.
Land Drainage Districts—Where the rates of the district are based on the acreage of land occupied by the ratepayer, from one to three votes are allowed according to the area of land owned. Where the rates are based on rateable value of the land, the franchise is the same as that derived from a rating qualification in a county.
Other Districts—River districts, water-supply districts, and the local railway district all have a franchise similar to that of counties. Districts composed of a grouping of districts of other types united for a common purpose have a franchise as for the component districts. Such districts are urban drainage districts, electric power districts, harbour districts, hospital districts, urban transport districts, and catchment districts. In some cases—e.g., the Hutt Valley Drainage Board—the members are appointed or elected by the territorial local authorities included in the district.
Voting Procedures—Prior to 1962 the franchise could only be exercised by personal attendance at the polling booth. However, as a result of experience gained from experiments carried out over three separate elections in the use of postal voting, voting spread over consecutive days, and mobile polling booths, the Local Elections and Polls Act 1966 was amended in 1970 to permit local authorities to use these procedures on a general basis. (Authority to use postal voting is limited to county councils. Other local authorities are able to use this method only on approval being granted by Order in Council.)
Local Government Commission—The Local Government Commission Act 1967, which replaced the Local Government Commission Act 1961, set up a revised Local Government Commission which is a permanent institution deemed to be a Commission of Inquiry under the Commissions of Inquiry Act 1908.
The Act provides that the Commission shall consist of a Chairman with knowledge of local Government, one member with a special knowledge of finance and economics, and another member with a special knowledge of administration.
The functions of the Commission are to carry out investigations, prepare reorganisation schemes, and make recommendations and reports for the purpose of ensuring that the system of local government in any locality will best provide for the needs and continued development of the locality, that local authorities have such district boundaries and such functions and powers as will enable them to provide most effectively and economically essential or desirable local government services and facilities, that local authorities shall have such resources as will enable them to engage adequate services and to obtain and operate adequate technical facilities, plant, and equipment, and that districts shall be of such size and nature as will promote efficient local government and avoid the necessity of uneconomic expenditure.
The Commission has a duty to prepare local government area schemes to cover the whole of New Zealand by 31 December 1972. These schemes are to come into force as final schemes after the hearing of objections to publicly notified provisional schemes. These schemes will have no immediate effect on the local authorities in the local government area, but will set the general pattern to which individual local schemes will be required to conform.
TOWN AND COUNTRY PLANNING—The Town and Country Planning Act 1953 provides for the making and enforcement of regional and district planning schemes, and the detailed procedure to be followed in each case is amplified by the Town and Country Planning Regulations 1960. The Government administers the Act through the Minister of Works who may delegate his authority to the Commissioner of Works.
Regional Planning—Regional Planning Authorities may be established under provisions of the Town and Country Planning Act 1953. As provided in the Act the authorities consist of representatives of the several councils whose districts are wholly or partly within the region. Every local authority within the region, other than the constituent councils, is entitled to be represented by at least one associate member. The Regional Planning Authority may also appoint any person who may be possessed of special knowledge, or representatives of any Department of State, to be associate members. Authorities are now operating in the four main centres and in Northland and Marlborough.
Finance for administration purposes is provided for by way of a maximum rate of one-sixtieth of a cent in the dollar on the rateable capital value of those portions of the councils' territories inside the regional area. The Act also makes provision whereby any of the constituent councils may enter into and carry out agreements for the execution of combined works.
Regional planning schemes must be preceded by a comprehensive survey of the natural resources of the areas concerned, and of the present and potential uses and values of all lands in relation to public utilities or amenities. Regional schemes envisage the conservation and economic development of natural resources by classification of lands according to their best uses and by the co-ordination of all such public improvements, utilities, and amenities as are not limited to the territory of any one local authority. Every regional planning scheme is intended to be a guide to councils engaged in the preparation of district planning schemes and to public authorities and all persons in relation to conservation and development within the region. Regional schemes are required to be reviewed at intervals of not more than 10 years.
District Planning—Every district scheme is required to have for its general purpose the development of the area to which it relates (including where necessary the replanning and reconstruction of an area already built on) in such a way as will most effectively tend to promote and safeguard the health, safety and convenience, the economic and general welfare of its inhabitants, and the amenities of every part of the area. The council of every city, borough, county, and independent town district must provide and maintain a district scheme whether or not a regional planning scheme including its district has been prepared or become operative.
While a district scheme is being prepared a council may refuse its consent to the carrying out of any development that would be in contravention of the scheme and falls within the definition of a “detrimental work”, but the owner or occupier affected may appeal against such a decision to the Town and Country Planning Appeal Board. The Minister can require the council to exercise these powers where the development would or might adversely affect Government works or the public interest, and local authorities have similar rights in respect of their works. Any appeal proceedings lie against the Minister or the local authority concerned.
In the period before a district scheme becomes operative, any change of use of land that detracts or is likely to detract from the amenities of the neighbourhood is required to have the prior consent of the council. Where an application is made to the council for consent, the applicant and every person who claims to be affected by the proposed use has a right to be heard by the council and may appeal to the Appeal Board against the council's decision.
When completed and recommended by the council, copies of a district scheme are submitted to the Minister of Works and to adjoining councils and to local authorities within the area covered by the scheme for consideration, particularly in relation to their public works. When the Minister and each local authority is satisfied that all their respective public works have been properly provided for in the scheme and have certified accordingly, the district scheme is publicly notified for inspection for three months. Any owner or occupier of land affected may object to any provision of the scheme, and the Minister, other local authorities, professional, business, sporting or other such organisations, may also object to the scheme on grounds of public interest. In the event of an objection not being sustained by the council the objector may appeal to the Appeal Board whose decision is final.
Where any council has not an operative district scheme for its district by 1 January 1971, the Minister of Works is empowered to take such steps as he may consider necessary to have such a district scheme made operative as quickly as possible. The costs and expenses incurred by the Minister are recoverable from the local authority, or they may be deducted from any moneys payable to the local authority by the Crown.
When a district scheme has been finally approved and made operative the council and all local authorities having jurisdiction in the district are bound to observe, and enforce observance of, the requirements of the scheme. The provisions of an operative regional planning scheme are also obligatory, but a constituent council has a right of appeal to the Town and Country Planning Appeal Board where a provision of a proposed or operative district scheme conflicts with the regional scheme; the Minister has, incidentally, a similar right of appeal so far as the regional scheme conflicts with the public interest.
Operative district schemes may be changed at any time, and must be reviewed when any part of the scheme has been operative for a period of five years. In preparing, recommending, and approving a change or a review of a district scheme the proposed change or review is publicly notified for inspection by owners and occupiers of property and simultaneously submitted to the Minister, to the Regional Planning Authority, and to the local authorities within the district for their consideration and objection where necessary in the light of their respective public works and other responsibilities.
Once a district scheme has been made operative it cannot be cancelled unless it is replaced at the same time by another operative district scheme. Furthermore, once a proposed change to an operative district scheme has been publicly notified for inspection and objection by owners and occupiers of property, no development work, subdivision, or change of use of land or buildings that would conflict with the proposed change may be carried out without permission by order of the Appeal Board.
Where a district scheme is operative the local authority may take, under the Public Works Act 1928, any land in its district if in accordance with the scheme it considers it is necessary or expedient to do so for the proper development or use of the land, or for the provision or preservation of amenities, or for the improvement of areas that are too closely subdivided or are occupied by decadent buildings.
POPULATION GROWTH—The most significant features of population changes in recent years have been the continuing growth of urban areas and the rapid population expansion in many centres in the northern half of the North Island. Approximately 45 percent of New Zealand's total population live in the northern portion of the country, above a line drawn from just north of Wairoa to just north of New Plymouth, roughly the old Auckland provincial district. Over half of this population resides in Central Auckland statistical area or from a line just below Mercer to a line just above Wellsford, illustrating the intensive growth of Auckland and its environs. More people than ever before are urban dwellers; 77.3 percent of the population were living in cities, boroughs or townships with populations greater than 1,000 at the 1966 Census.
New Zealand's first million of population was recorded in 1908, 68 years after the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi. In 1952, 44 years later, the second million was reached, and the third million is expected to be reached in the mid-1970s. Throughout the main period of European settlement in New Zealand, which lasted from 1850 to 1880, the rate of population growth was very rapid. The 1858 Census recorded 115,462 inhabitants of whom one-half were Maoris. At the 1886 Census the population had reached 620,451, though the Maori population had in the meantime fallen from 56,049 to 43,927.
Thereafter, as the wave of immigration subsided, the rate of growth slowed down. The average annual increase has varied between 0.8 and 2.8 percent, with low rates during the depression periods of 1886-1891 and 1929-1936, and also during the two World Wars. In the 20 years from 1945 the annual rate of growth was over 2 percent a year. The lower birth rate since 1964 together with changes in migration flow has resulted in a lower rate of growth in recent years.
During the present century, natural increase has been the principal element in the growth of population. Details are given in the following table.
|Period||March years||Calendar years|
|Births||Deaths||Natural Increase||Births||Deaths||Natural Increase|
The other element in the population growth—the gains from external migration—is shown in the following table. Movements of the armed forces are not included.
|Period||March Years* Migration Gain||Calendar Years Migration Cain|
*March years ended in years listed.
† Excess of departures.
Most of the inward migration has been from the United Kingdom, Australia, and the Netherlands. In more recent years increasing numbers have come from the Pacific Islands, notably Western Samoa. A changed economic climate in the country brought a net migration loss to population for 1967, 1968, and 1969 calendar years.
CENSUS STATISTICS—Population statistics are based primarily on the five-yearly population census. Intercensal population estimates are based on the most recent census data available, adjusted in accordance with later figures of births, deaths, and migration. Estimates of the populations of particular localities, e.g., cities and boroughs, also take into account local economic developments, housing schemes, the numbers on school rolls, changes in boundaries, and any other factors leading to, or indicating, changes in population.
The basis adopted for the population census, and virtually throughout population statistics in New Zealand, is that of population physically present in the place of enumeration at the time of enumeration.
All references to New Zealand relate solely to geographic New Zealand, i.e., island territories are omitted except where their inclusion is specifically stated. Though Niue Island and Tokelau Islands are constitutionally part of New Zealand, for geographical reasons they are administered separately. The Cook Islands are self-governing but the islanders are New Zealand citizens.
PRESENT POPULATION—The following table gives a summary of population. A 50-year time series is given in the Statistical Summary towards the back of this Yearbook.
*Includes population of the inhabited minor islands, i.e., Kermadec Islands, 9 (males); and Campbell Island, 9 (males) and movements of Armed Forces.
|New Zealand*—Total||31 December 1970||1,429,597||1,428,265||2,857,862|
|(a)—Maoris (included above)†||31 December 1970||117,433||114,589||232,022|
|(b) Island Territories|
|Tokelau Islands||25 September 1970||779||908||1,687|
|Niue Island||31 December 1970||2,592||2,592||5,184|
|(c) Cook Islands||31 December 1970||10,740||10,520||21,260|
|(d) Ross Dependency||31 December 1968||24||-||24|
INCREASE OF POPULATION—The growth of population has been substantial in each intercensal period. The lowest rates are those of 1926-36, which included some years of economic depression, and of 1936-45, which included six years of international war.
|Date of Census||Total Population||Intercensal Numerical Increase||Intercensal Percentage Increase||Average Annual Percentage Increase|
*Excludes New Zealand armed forces personnel overseas; numbers of armed forces personnel overseas at the respective dates were: 1901,2,500 (approx.); 1916,44,000(approx.); 1945,45,381; 1951,1,894; 1956,2,162; 1961,2,559; and 1966,1,936.
†Includes New Zealand armed forces personnel overseas.
COMPARISON WITH OTHER COUNTRIES—The annual average percentage increases of population for the period 1963-68 are given in the following table for certain selected countries. (Source: United Nations Statistical Yearbook.)
|Country||Average Annual Percentage Increase|
INTERCENSAL RECORDS—Intercensal statements of total population are prepared from the records of vital statistics and of external migration.
The following population figures exclude members of New Zealand armed forces who were overseas, and also members of the armed forces of other countries who were in New Zealand.
|Year||Total Population at End of Year||Increase During Year||Mean Population for Year|
|Years Ended 31 March|
|Years Ended 31 December|
The figures given in the preceding table are for total population inclusive of Maoris. The following table shows the Maori population.
|Year||Maori Population at End of Year||Increase During Year||Mean Population for Year|
|Years Ended 31 March|
|Years Ended 31 December|
POPULATION PROJECTIONS—An indication of future population growth, including Maoris, in New Zealand is given by the detailed projections for the period to 2000.
Projections of future population involve an element of uncertainty owing to incomplete knowledge of the factors underlying changes in fertility, mortality, and migration levels, coupled with the difficulty of accurately forecasting the future course of the factors which are known to affect these components of population change. It should be understood, therefore, that these projections merely show the effect of the assumptions stated below the table on the future growth of the existing population. The assumptions, however, have been adopted only after careful studies of trends in the patterns of fertility, mortality, and migration and, in the light of available current information, are regarded as those most likely to produce realistic projections over the length of the projection period.
|As at 31 December||Projected New Zealand Population* Assumming Net Annual Immigration of|
*The base population for these projections is the estimated actual population at 31 December 1970. The assumptions on which these projections depend are as follows:
(1) That 1967 age-of-mother and marital status specific birth rates will continue.
(2) That age-specific mortality rates will continue in accordance with the New Zealand Life Tables, 1960-62.
The following diagram presented on a ratio scale shows the growth of actual population from 1880 to 1968 and projections through to 2000.
DISTRIBUTION OF POPULATION—Detailed population statistics are compiled for each census and are published in Volume 1, Increase and Location of Population, of the Census of Population and Dwellings.
North and South Islands—In 1858 the North Island had a larger population than the South, but this position was reversed at the succeeding enumeration, and the South Island had the larger population (exclusive of Maoris) at each census from 1861 to 1896. In 1901 the North Island was found to have slightly the larger total and since then has steadily increased its lead.
The following table gives the population, excluding Maoris, of the North and South Islands as disclosed by each census since 1901.
|Census Year||Population (Excluding Maoris)||Percentages|
|North Island||South Island||Total||North Island||South Island|
The population of the North Island increased at a greater proportionate rate than that of the South Island between the 1961 and 1966 censuses. At the 1966 census the North Island population was 1,893,326, including 190,524 Maoris, and the South Island population 783,593, inclusive of 10,635 Maoris. The increase since the 1961 census was 208,541 for the North Island and 53,394 for the South Island.
The natural increase of population (i.e., excess of births over deaths) for the North Island during the 1961-66 intercensal period was 152,942, and for the South Island the natural increase was 48,312. External migration has also added to the population and there has been population movement between the islands.
Statistical Areas—The boundaries of statistical areas are shown on the map inside the back cover. Northland comprises the northern counties from Mangonui to Otamatea; central Auckland, the counties from Rodney to Franklin (including islands in the Hauraki Gulf); East Coast, the area north of Wairoa; while South Auckland - Bay of Plenty comprises the remainder of the provincial district. Hawke's Bay, Taranaki, and Wellington statistical areas are the same as the provincial districts of the same names.
In the South Island the statistical areas coincide with the provincial district boundaries, except for the transfer of Amuri and Cheviot counties from Nelson to Canterbury, and the transfer of all that area of Grey county north of Grey River from Nelson to Westland.
In the following table the approximate areas and the populations as at the census of March 1966 and estimated at 1 April 1970 of the statistical areas are shown.
|Statistical Area||Area (Square Miles)||Population Census 22 March 1966||Estimated Population 1 April 1970|
|South Auckland—Bay of Plenty||14,187||389,334||415,900|
|Totals North Island||44,297||1,893,326||2,017,552|
|Totals South Island||59,439||783,593||803,262|
|Totals New Zealand||103,736||2,676,919||2,820,814|
Urban Areas—Urban areas are statistical conceptions and not administrative units. Their purpose is to provide definite, stable, and comparable boundaries for the larger centres of population. In addition to the central city or borough, they include neighbouring boroughs and town districts and parts of counties which are regarded as suburban to the centre of population.
For the 1961 Census, three new urban areas were defined at Whangarei, Tauranga, and Rotorua and comparable figures compiled for past years.
In the following table statistics of urban areas are given; 62.5 percent of the population lived in these areas in 1966.
|Urban Area||Total Population||Increase 1961-66|
|1951||1956||1961||1966||Estimates 1 April 1970||Percentage|
The next table gives the component parts of the five largest centres of population as estimated at 1 April 1970.
|Urban Area||Estimated Population 1 April 1970|
|*Excludes portion of city outside the defined urban area boundary.|
|East Coast Bays borough||14,250|
|Glen Eden borough||6,430|
|New Lynn borough||10,400|
|Mt. Albert borough||25,600|
|Mt. Eden borough||18,450|
|Mt. Roskill borough||34,900|
|One Tree Hill borough||12,900|
|Mt. Wellington borough||20,100|
|Remainder of urban area||68,790|
|Lower Hutt city||59,400|
|Upper Hutt city||20,300|
|Remainder of urban area||27,410|
|Remainder of urban area||4,900|
|Remainder of urban area||75,840|
|Port Chalmers borough||2,990|
|St. Kilda borough||6,700|
|Green Island borough||6,090|
|Remainder of urban area||5,080|
Cities and Boroughs—The population of cities and boroughs is now given.
|City or Borough||Population Estimate 1 April 1970||Approximate Area in Acres, 1 April 1970|
|East Coast Bays||14,250||3,850|
|One Tree Hill||12,900||2,430|
|New Plymouth (city)||33,100||5,722|
|Palmerston N. (city)||51,000||10,630|
|Upper Hutt (city)||20,300||2,165|
|Lower Hutt (city)||59,400||12,174|
|Totals, North Island cities and boroughs||1,426,730||432,732|
|Totals, South Island cities and boroughs||508,530||152,398|
|Grand totals, all cities and boroughs||1,935,260||585,130|
Town Districts—The population of independent town districts—i.e., those contained in section (a) of the following table—is not included with that of the county in which the town district is located, but the population of dependent town districts—section (b) — is included in that of the respective parent county.
|Town District||Population Estimate 1 April 1970||Approximate Area in Acres, 1 April 1970|
|*Parent county shown in parentheses.|
|(a) Town Districts not forming parts of Counties|
|Totals, North Island||7,860||6,818|
|Totals, South Island||1,630||1,170|
|(b) Town Districts forming parts of Counties*|
|Russell (Bay of Islands)||630||1,066|
|Totals, North Island||3,030||4,703|
|Totals, South Island||590||696|
County Towns—The following table lists those county towns with populations of 1,000 or more at the time of the 1966 census. The parent county is shown in parentheses. The populations of county towns are included in the administrative county populations given in the table following.
|County Town||Population Estimate 1 April 1970||Approximate Area, in Acres, 1 April 1970|
|Moerewa (Bay of Islands)||1,190||121|
|Kelston West (Waitemata)||7,790||1,621|
|Green Bay (Waitemata)||2,500||471|
|Pukerua Bay (Hutt)||1,300||2,062|
Extra-county Islands and Shipboard Population—In addition to the populations quoted for administrative counties, cities and boroughs, and independent town districts, the New Zealand totals include shipboard population and persons located on islands not within the boundaries of any county. The two latter categories comprised a total of 5,074 people as at 1 April 1970.
Counties—The following table gives the population of individual counties at 1 April 1970, together with the approximate area of each. It should be noted that “Administrative Counties” do not include boroughs or town districts independent of county control, but include town districts and county towns which form parts of counties.
|Administrative County||Population Estimate 1 April 1970||Approximate Area, in Square Miles, 1 April 1970|
|Bay of Islands||12,790||823|
|Great Barrier Is.||260||110|
|Totals, North Is. counties||579,060||43,452|
|Grand totals, all counties||870,990||102,414|
Most of those counties showing considerable gains of population are adjacent to large cities.
Population Growth and Urbanisation—With the growth in the efficiency of farming, with increased specialisation, and general development of the economy, urban centres have increased rapidly in size and population has tended to concentrate in them; employment opportunities have been provided in manufacturing and service industries for the expanding labour force. In 1874 two-thirds of the population lived in settlements of less than 500 persons, that is to say on farms or in hamlets. Under a changed classification in 1900, 54 percent were living in counties and the remainder in boroughs. It is a characteristic of most countries that agriculture's share of total population declines with more advanced economic development. By 1961 only one-quarter of the population lived in rural areas and the proportion declined further by 1966. The following table indicates the urban movement of the total population; the urban content has been taken as the population of the defined urban areas, as enumerated previously, plus that of all boroughs, town districts, townships, and (for 1961 and 1966) county towns with population of 1,000 or over.
In recent years urbanisation has helped to absorb the increasing Maori population and likewise rapid expansion in the number of Maoris of working age has contributed to economic growth. The following table indicates the urban movement of the Maori population.
In the process of urbanisation some cities and areas have grown more quickly than others. There is a tendency towards concentration of population in the largest centres and also a drift of population from the south to the north. Where the two tendencies reinforce each other, as they do in the case of Auckland, the rate of growth has been very rapid. Likewise the urban areas of Whangarei, Hamilton, Tauranga, and Rotorua, which had a combined population in 1926 of 36,084, in 1966 comprised 157,641 inhabitants.
The initial reason for the drift to the north lay in the change in emphasis of farming activities in which the development of dairying played an important part. The expansion of dairying in itself called for the development of factory processing facilities and service industries. These farming trends have been reinforced by the growth of forest processing industries in the North Island and compounded further by the general tendency for the large-scale manufacturing units to be located close to the biggest local markets.
In the larger cities a notable feature of the past 35 years has been a movement of population from the central or “inner” areas to the perimeter or “outer” areas as families in decayed areas have moved to State rental houses and as residential units in the city centres have been replaced by shops, offices, places of entertainment, and other commercial or industrial buildings. In recent years there has been an offsetting movement with the building of multi-storey flats in the inner areas.
The distribution of population by size of centres is shown in the following table.
|Size of Centre (City, Borough, Town District, or County Town)||Number of Centres||Percentage of Population in These Centres|
|25,000 and over||4||11||12||19||24.1||32.4||32.4||40.9|
In the South Island a higher proportion of the population is rural, that is, outside urban communities, than in the North Island.
Sex Proportions—The census of 22 March 1966 showed that males outnumbered females by 10,567 in the total population but, because of changes since 1966, there were just over 1,200 more males by 30 June 1970. Females per 1,000 males at the last 6 censuses have been:
|Census||Excluding Armed Forces Abroad||Including Armed Forces Abroad|
There are marked differences in the sex proportions of the population of different parts of New Zealand, depending largely on educational and employment opportunities. The following figures give the number of females per 1,000 males at the Census of 1966.
|South Auckland - Bay of Plenty||960|
DENSITY OF POPULATION—Generally speaking, a dense population must depend upon intensive land utilisation or industrialisation. In New Zealand there is a great area of high mountainous country, particularly in the South Island, while there are also large areas of hilly country which cannot be closely settled, while the growth of mechanisation in farming tends to reduce the size of the labour force engaged in farming operations.
Nevertheless, economic development is providing employment for a growing labour force. More extensive mechanisation, further advances in science and technology, and increases in productivity, wealth, and consumption have paved the way for further specialisation of production and more concentrated urbanisation.
Within New Zealand there are wide variations in density of population. The following table provides comparative density figures on a statistical area basis from 1926 to 1966 censuses.
|Statistical Area||Area, in Square Miles||Persons per Square Mile|
|South Auckland - Bay of Plenty||14,187||10.2||12.6||14.4||17.4||24.6||27.4|
|Totals, North Island||44,297||20.2||23.0||25.9||29.7||38.0||42.7|
|Totals, South Island||59,439||8.7||9.4||9.4||10.5||12.3||13.2|
|Totals, New Zealand||103,736||13.6||15.2||16.5||18.7||23.3||25.8|
MAORI POPULATION—All persons of half or more Maori ancestry are defined as Maoris.
According to census records the Maori population suffered a period of almost unbroken decline from 1858 to 1896. Among the causes of this were the susceptibility of the Maori to tuberculosis, measles, typhoid, and other diseases introduced by immigrants; the abandonment in some areas of healthy hilltop villages for low, often swampy sites; low birth rates coupled with high child-mortality rates; and a feeling of race-despair engendered by loss of land, defeat in war, and the general breakdown in health.
Since 1896, however, the Maori population has increased continuously, at first steadily and of later years at a very rapid rate. In fact, the vitality exhibited by the Maori race in recent years has been an outstanding demographic feature.
A statement of Maori population is now given for each census from 1901.
|Year||Maori Population||Intercensal Increase||Intercensal Increase||Average Annual Increase|
|*Includes members of armed forces overseas at census date.|
Of the 201,159 Maoris at the 1966 census, 190,524 were in the North Island. Most Maoris used to live in rural communities. A marked change has, however, taken place during and since the war as a result of employment conditions. As late as the 1936 census only 8,249 Maoris (10.0 percent) dwelt in cities, boroughs, or independent town districts. By the 1966 census the comparative figure was 101,677 (50.5 percent); the largest concentration is in Auckland Urban Area, where 33,926 Maoris were enumerated in 1966.
EXTERNAL MIGRATION—In recent years there has been a large increase in New Zealanders going overseas on business, on pleasure trips, and on working holidays, so that arrivals and departures have both been greatly swollen. The arrivals include many New Zealanders returning from travel overseas, as well as growing numbers of tourists from overseas countries.
The numbers of arrivals and departures during the last 11 years are given in the table following. Crews of vessels, through passengers, tourists on cruising liners and members of the armed forces, etc., have not been taken into account in this table.
|Year Ended 31 March||Arrivals||Departures||Excess of Arrivals Over Departures|
New Zealand usually has a net migration gain of a lower rate than that of Australia, but has a higher rate of natural increase. The total population of New Zealand grew faster (40.7 percent) than that of Australia (40.2 percent) from 1951 to 1966. New Zealand, however, had migration losses from 1967 to 1969. Annual percentage increases are shown in the following table.
|Calendar Years||Rate of Population Increase (Percent)|
Classes of Arrivals and Departures—The following table gives an analysis of all classes of arrivals during the last five March years, including through passengers, tourists on cruising liners, and crews. In classifying arrivals or departures as permanent the commonly used international rule is applied—i.e., intended residence or absence of one year or more.
|* Persons who intend to spend less than one week in New Zealand in transit to other destinations.|
|Immigrants intending permanent residence||35,299||38,999||30,660||23,225||26,825|
|New Zealand residents returning||86,624||98,536||105,533||100,609||111,589|
|Theatrical, entertaining, etc.||1,072||1,261||2,159||2,285||1,819|
|For educational purposes||829||1,828||2,254||2,031||2,637|
|On working holidays||11,905||18,242||7,560||5,495||7,724|
|Other, official, etc.||7,786||3,974||4,629||4,406||3,882|
|Through passengers, mainly on cruising liners||55,265||72,561||84,839||88,783||86,119|
The following table gives an analysis of departures.
|New Zealand residents departing—|
|Permanently (i.e. over 12 months)||18,589||21,128||28,472||29,802||29,822|
|Through passengers, mainly on cruising liners||55,265||72,561||84,839||88,783||86,119|
Ages—The following table gives the age-distribution of permanent arrivals and departures for the year ended 31 March 1970.
|Age, in Years||Permanent Arrivals||Permanent Departures||Excess of Arrivals Over Departures|
|60 and over||629||940||1,569||342||445||787||782|
Origin—The following table shows for the last three years the birthplaces of immigrants intending permanent residence and of New Zealand residents departing permanently. (“Permanent” is defined as 12 months or more.)
|Country of Birth||Immigrants Intending Permanent Residence||New Zealand Residents Departing Permanently|
|England and Wales||11.732||6,904||7,569||4,482||4,373||4,134|
|Other or undefined||2||41||89||18||30||25|
|Cook Islands and Niue||477||317||664||140||72||86|
|Totals, Commonwealth countries||27,437||20,586||23,681||25,993||27,536||27,561|
|Ireland, Republic of||301||155||181||161||155||134|
|Totals, other countries||3,223||2,639||3,144||2,479||2,266||2,261|
Assisted Immigration—Two assisted immigration schemes from Britain are in operation at present—the assisted passage scheme and the subsidy scheme. The contribution made by migrants under each scheme was reduced in 1970 to £10 sterling for single persons and £20 for married persons. Arrangements are made with the Department of Labour, Wellington, and the Chief Migration Officer, New Zealand House, London.
The assisted passage scheme is limited to 500 migrants a year and they must possess minimum skills (usually at tradesman level) in specific occupations approved by the Department of Labour. Single persons between the ages of 18 and 35 years are eligible and married couples up to age 40 years without children. Employers sponsor migrants by offering a job and arranging accommodation.
The subsidy scheme, as previously operating, was amended in February 1970. The quota (which had varied between 1,500 and 4,500 a year) was abolished; employers now have to pay only one quarter of the air fare instead of half (the remainder being subsidised by the Government); travel by sea is subsidised at $200 a person; and the migrants no longer need to have specific skills to qualify for the scheme. Single men between the ages of 18 and 35 years may be sponsored and married men between 18 and 45 years without limit on the number of dependent children. Employers are obliged to provide employment, arrange suitable accommodation in advance for a married migrant and meet their share of the cost of fares to New Zealand.
In September 1970 the subsidy scheme was extended to the United States and to countries in Western Europe for the recruitment of skilled and semi-skilled workers. Migrants from these countries must possess the skill or experience to meet the employer's requirements and pay the same contribution as British migrants.
A system of matching skills of immigrants with specific vacancies in New Zealand has been developed by the Chief Migration Officer, New Zealand House, London, and a similar register has been established by the N.Z. Consul-General in Los Angeles. Employers interested in recruiting migrants with certain skills may file details of their vacancies through the Department of Labour in Wellington.
The numbers of assisted immigrants (excluding displaced persons and Hungarian and Czech refugees) arriving in the last 11 years are as follows.
|Year Ended 31 March||British||Dutch||Austrian||German||Danish||Swiss||Belgian||Maltese||Greek||Other||Total|
In the preceding migration tables assisted immigrants are included in the totals of “Immigrants intending permanent residence”.
Refugees—Apart from displaced persons from Europe, of which New Zealand accepted 4,582 in the three year period 1949-52 as a member of the International Refugee Organisation, and the 1,117 Hungarian refugees accepted during 1956-58, New Zealand has accepted and continues to accept refugees from Europe and the mainland of China. In 1958 it was decided to offer resettlement opportunities to 20 “hard core” refugee families from Europe who, because of handicapped persons in each family unit, were unacceptable elsewhere. These families arrived during 1959. In 1959 it was decided to accept a further 100 “hard core” families. This figure was subsequently increased to 200. New Zealand has continued to accept a steady flow of refugees including families sponsored by the Churches who also accepted responsibility for 50 orphan children from Hong Kong, Chinese refugee families, and White Russians (including 80 Old Believers who arrived during 1965 and are now settled in the Southland area).
From November 1968, 100 Czech refugees had arrived by 1969 and it was decided to accept an additional 100.
IMMIGRATION—The legislation respecting immigration into New Zealand is contained in the Immigration Act 1964, and the Undesirable Immigrants Exclusion Act 1919. The Immigration Act is administered by the Department of Labour, while the Undesirable Immigrants Exclusion Act is administered by the Department of Justice.
Under the Immigration Act all persons other than New Zealand citizens must be in possession of an entry permit before they may land in New Zealand.
To obtain permission to settle in New Zealand, intending immigrants should first write to or call on the nearest overseas representative of the New Zealand Government or write direct to the Secretary of Labour, P.O. Box 6310, Wellington, New Zealand. The application must be made in the prescribed form and must be supported by documents duly attested in the country of origin. Each application is considered individually on its own merits.
PASSPORTS—Authority for the issue of passports in New Zealand and by New Zealand representatives overseas is contained in the Passports Act 1946 and the Passport Regulations 1946.
New Zealand passports are issued and renewed within New Zealand by the Department of Internal Affairs at Wellington, Auckland, and Christchurch, at Rarotonga by the High Commissioner, at Niue by the Resident Commissioner, and overseas by the representatives of New Zealand at Apia, Athens, Bangkok, Bonn, Brisbane, Brussels, Canberra, Djakarta, Fiji, Geneva, The Hague, Kuala Lumpur, London, Los Angeles, Melbourne, New Delhi, New York, Ottawa, Paris, Rome, Saigon, San Francisco, Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo, and Washington. United Kingdom, Canadian, Australian, and Indian passports are issued and renewed in New Zealand by the respective High Commissioners for those countries.
Entry into New Zealand—Apart from British subjects and the wives of British subjects arriving from Australia, no person 16 years of age or over may land in New Zealand unless he is in possession of a valid passport or other recognised travel document. Exemption from the passport requirement (which is additional to the requirements of the Immigration Act and Undesirable Immigrants Exclusion Act) may be granted in exceptional circumstances by the Minister of Internal Affairs. A British subject who is a master or a member of the crew of the vessel in which he arrives does not need to produce a passport.
With the exception of nationals of those countries with which New Zealand has concluded agreements for the mutual abolition of visas, every alien landing in New Zealand requires a visa.
Persons born in the Cook Islands and the Tokelau Islands are British subjects and New Zealand citizens. They are required to obtain formal exit permission from the High Commissioner or Administrator respectively if they wish to proceed to New Zealand.
Departure from New Zealand—Every person leaving New Zealand, with the exception of a British subject travelling to Australia or making the round trip to New Zealand's island territories, should be in possession of a valid passport or other travel document.
NATIONALITY AND NATURALISATION—The basic nationality law is the British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948. Citizens of all Commonwealth countries are recognised as British subjects.
New Zealand citizenship may be acquired in the following ways: (a) by birth in New Zealand; (b) by descent; (c) by registration; and (d) by naturalisation. Citizens of other Commonwealth countries and the Republic of Ireland acquire New Zealand citizenship by registration, as do alien wives and children of New Zealand citizens. Other aliens acquire it by naturalisation. To be eligible for New Zealand citizenship, an alien or a citizen of another Commonwealth country (other than a woman married to a New Zealand citizen, or a minor) must—(a) have resided in New Zealand for the prescribed period, (b) be of full age and capacity, (c) be of good character, (d) have a sufficient knowledge of the English language, and of the responsibilities and privileges of New Zealand citizenship, (e) intend to reside in New Zealand, or to enter or continue Crown service under the New Zealand Government. The residential qualification for naturalisation is five years, for registration it is generally three years but can be reduced to one year.
A person who acquires New Zealand citizenship by naturalisation must take the oath of allegiance; a person who acquires it by registration may be required to take the oath. Ceremonies are held at which applicants, in an atmosphere of dignity and solemnity, take the oath of allegiance and are presented with their certificates of naturalisation or registration as New Zealand citizens. During the 1969-70 year there were 124 such ceremonies, at which 1,224 persons took the oath of allegiance.
New Zealand citizens may be deprived of New Zealand citizenship if they voluntarily acquire a foreign nationality by any formal act other than marriage, or if they voluntarily exercise the privileges or perform any of the duties of a foreign nationality possessed by them. Citizenship obtained by fraud, false representation, or the concealment of any material fact may be withdrawn.
The following table shows the number of persons, by country of birth, who were granted citizenship in the latest two years ended 31 March. Of the total of 1,959 in 1969-70, 575 were wives of New Zealand citizens and 371 were children.
|Country of Birth||1968-69||1969-70|
|United Arab Republic||12||7|
REGISTRATION OF ALIENS—The registration of aliens in New Zealand is provided for by the Aliens Act 1948, which is administered by the Department of Internal Affairs.
The number of aliens on the New Zealand register at any particular date does not constitute the total number in New Zealand, as certain classes are not required to register, including the following: (a) children under 16 years of age; (b) persons holding diplomatic status, consuls, or employees of embassies, legations, and consulates who are resident in New Zealand solely for the purpose of performing official duties; (c) certain temporary visitors to New Zealand. Under the British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948 a citizen of the Republic of Ireland, though not possessing the status of British subject (or, in alternative phraseology, Commonwealth citizen), is nevertheless not classed as an alien and is not required to register.
The following table shows, by country of nationality, the number of males and females on the register.
|Country of Nationality||1 April 1969||1 April 1970|
Gains in numbers on the register for any nationality occur for several reasons—mainly, (a) immigrants of 16 years of age and over who arrive during the year, (b) registration (on reaching the age of 16) of children whose parents may have arrived in previous years but are still registered aliens.
Reductions in the numbers of registered aliens in the main come from naturalisations, deaths or departure overseas.
Five years residence in New Zealand is necessary before an alien can qualify for naturalisation.
STATISTICS OF THE POPULATION CENSUS—Publications resulting from the Census of Population and Dwellings are listed towards the back of this Yearbook. Provisional population figures from the census of population of 23 March 1971 may be published in Latest Statistical Information at the end of this Yearbook.
MARITAL STATUS—The marital status of persons aged 16 years and over as returned at the census of 1966 is summarised in the following tables.
|Age (Years)||Never Married||Married||Legally Separated||Widowed||Divorced||Not Specified||Total|
|90 and over||121||318||5||719||5||2||1,170|
|90 and over||331||140||1||1,747||6||7||2,232|
The percentage distribution of the population aged 16 years or over according to marital status is given in the following summary.
DEPENDENT CHILDREN—Married men, widowers, and widows were asked at the census in 1966 to state the number of their living children under 16 years (including stepchildren and children adopted by them). Married women, divorced and legally separated persons were not asked to supply the information as this would have created the risk of duplication of children counted.
The numbers of persons having dependent children, including Maoris, are now shown. The category “nil” includes those cases where members of the family were 16 years of age and over, as well as those cases where there were no children in the family.
|Number of Dependent Children Under 16 Years||1961 Census||1966 Census|
|Of Married Men||Of Widowers||Of Widows||Of Married Men||Of Widowers||Of Widows|
|9 and over||1,317||8||15||1,545||14||15|
The numbers of dependent children in each of the three groups in 1966 were: dependent on married men, 883,239; dependent on widowers, 5,058; and dependent on widows, 14,771, a total of 903,068 dependent children out of a 1966 census total of 922,349 children under 16 years of age. The difference is accounted for mainly by the exclusion of children whose parents were legally separated; those whose parents were divorced and had not remarried; children who had lost both parents; and ex-nuptial children (the last two classes excluding cases of adoption). It should be noted also, that some children listed by married men, widowers, and widows were, in fact, not counted in the 922,349 at 1966 Census, in so far as they were domiciled outside New Zealand. These remarks also apply to earlier censuses.
Comparable numbers of dependent children in the three groups in 1961 were: dependent on married men, 802,711; dependent on widowers, 4,932; and dependent on widows, 13,716; a total of 821,359 out of a total of 840,443 children under 16 years.
Between the 1961 and 1966 censuses the total number of dependent children of married men increased from 802,711 to 883,239, a rise of 10.0 percent. The number of married men increased by 53,718 or 10.2 percent. Those recording “nil” dependent children increased by 14.2 percent, while those with dependent children increased by 7.7 percent.
Married men with two children recorded the largest numerical increase, rising from 99,932 to 106,669, this representing a 6.7 percent increase. The greatest percentage increase, however, was recorded by married men with seven children, this group increasing from 3,166 in 1961 to 3,878 in 1966, a rise of 712 or 22 percent.
The next table shows within each group, the average number of dependent children, firstly for all persons within the group, and then for persons with dependent children in that group.
|Average Number of Dependent Children||1956 Census||1961 Census||1966 Census|
|Per person with dependent children||2.38||2.49||2.54|
|Per person with dependent children||2.09||2.04||2.10|
|Per person with dependent children||2.01||2.00||2.07|
HOUSEHOLDS—There were 716,104 households in permanent private dwellings at the Census in 1966. The following table analyses the type of household by the number of occupants. A one-family-only household consists of a husband and wife with or without unmarried children of any age.
|Type of Household||Total House-holds||Number of Households with Occupants of|
|1||2||3||4||5||6||7 or more|
|*While not strictly an “extended family”, other groupings are included, mainly consisting of such relationships as a mother and widowed daughter.|
|One-family-only households (complete)||432+338||-||125,444||78,936||95,918||67,856||36,693||27,491|
|Incomplete with child absent||24,700||-||5,039||4,823||5,173||3,932||2,377||3,356|
|Incomplete with one parent absent||37,491||-||18,300||9,523||5,124||2,518||1,059||967|
|Family with related persons only present (e.g., married children, grandchildren, parents)||31,272||-||1,345*||7,257||6,316||6,226||4,321||5,807|
|Family plus related persons, but with non-related persons present||58,268||-||-||11,565||12,566||12,392||9,418||12,327|
Of the 716,104 households at the 1966 Census of Population and Dwellings, there were 432,338 complete one-family-only households, that is, a husband and wife with or without unmarried children of any age.
In the following table these households are analysed by distribution of the occupants and the occupational status of the head of the household.
|Occupational Status of Head||Total Households||Husband and Wife only||Husband and wife with—|
|One Child||Two Children||Three Children||Four Children||Five or more Children|
|* Including relative assisting heads and not specified but who are in the labour force.|
|Actively Engaged Head-Employer||41,012||7,329||7,231||10,127||8,272||4,920||3,133|
|Wages or salary||302,732||71,383||58,607||74,214||50,929||26,816||20,783|
|Not Actively Engaged Head-Retired||45,584||37,325||5,898||1,541||485||174||161|
|Dependent on public or private support||1,680||1,035||260||149||95||61||80|
|Totals, all heads||432,338||125,444||78,936||95,918||67,856||36,693||27,491|
The following table shows the composition of one-complete-family-only households in 1966 by the age group of the head of the household.
|Age Group of Head (in Years)||Husband and Wife Only||Husband and Wife With|
|1 Child*||2 Children*||3 or More Children*|
|*Unmarried children of any age living at home.|
|65 and over||40,770||6,383||1,448||727|
|65 and over||82.7||12.9||2.9||1.5|
The following tables show, for one-complete-family-only households, the number of unmarried children of any age living with their parents on Census night 1966. The income given in the first table is the income of the head of the household, while in the second table the total household income is shown. In a considerable proportion of households, the total household income was substantially above the income of the head of the household, usually indicating at least one other income recipient in the family.
|Income of Head||Husband and Wife Only||Husband and Wife With|
|One Child||Two Children||Three Children||Four Children||Five or More Children|
|8,000 and over||1,799||1,592||2,338||2,049||1,302||743|
|Totals (including not specified)||125,444||78,936||95,918||67,856||36,693||27,491|
|Total Income of Household||Husband and Wife Only||Husband and Wife With|
|One Child||Two Children||Three Children||Four Children||Five or More Children|
|8,000 and over||2,545||2,895||4,149||3,390||2,099||1,436|
|Totals (including not specified)||125,444||78,936||95,918||67,856||36,693||27,491|
The following table shows persons living alone in 1966 by age and marital status; those not actively engaged in the labour force totalled 52,062.
|Age Group (in Years)||Marital Status||Total*|
|Never Married||Married†||Legally Separated or Divorced||Widowed|
*Includes those who did not specify marital status.
†in some cases the partner was temporarily absent on census night.
|65 and over||2,261||1,704||677||6,188||10,866|
|65 and over||4,842||1,587||958||24,356||31,775|
RELIGIOUS PROFESSIONS—The following summary presents the main religious professions returned at the 1961 and 1966 censuses.
|Religious Profession||Number of Adherents||Percentage|
|1961 Census||1966 Census||1961||1966|
|Anglican (Church of England)||835,434||901,701||34.6||33.7|
|Roman Catholic (including Catholic undefined)||364,098||425,280||15.1||15.9|
|Latter Day Saints||17,978||25,564||0.8||0.9|
|Church of Christ||10,485||10,301||0.4||0.4|
|Seventh Day Adventist||8,220||9,551||0.3||0.3|
|Assemblies of God||1,060||2,028||––||0.1|
|No Religion (so returned)||17,486||32,780||0.7||1.2|
|All other religious professions||14,386||23,499||0.6||0.9|
|Object to state||204,056||210,851||8.4||7.9|
The category recorded as “Object to state” represents those persons availing themselves of the special statutory right of objecting to answer a question on this subject. It is probable that the “not specified” group includes a number of persons objecting to the question.
AGE DISTRIBUTION—Census age-group figures are shown in the following table.
|Age (Years)||1961 Census||1966 Census||Percentage of Total Population|
|90 and over||1,030||1,830||2,860||1,170||2,232||3,402||0.1||0.1|
|Under 15 years||408,251||390,691||798,942||446,268||426,131||872,399||33.1||32.6|
|65 years and over||91,472||117,177||208,649||95,357||127,736||223,093||8.6||8.3|
|Minors (under 21 years)||522,266||499,599||1,021,865||592,886||566,833||1,159,719||42.3||43.3|
|Adults (21 years and over)||691,110||702,009||1,393,119||750,857||766,343||1,517,200||57.7||56.7|
ETHNIC GROUPS—The following table gives broad ethnic origins.
|Pacific Islanders Cook Island Maori||2,320||4,499||8,663|
|Sub-totals, Pacific Islanders||8,103||14,340||26,271|
|Syrian, Lebanese, and Arab||1,055||1,057||1,049|
COUNTRY OF BIRTH—From 1945 to 1961 the New Zealand-born population remained at about 86 percent of the total population; for 1966 the proportion dropped to 85 percent, partly as a result of the growth of travel and tourism internationally.
The following table classifies persons by country of birth.
|Country of Birth||Census|
|New Zealand (excluding Cook Islands and Niue)||1,863,344||2,074,509||2,279,994|
|Ireland (excluding Northern Ireland)||8,423||8,810||8,448|
|Cook Islands and Niue||2,745||4,788||7,852|
|Other countries, and born at sea||30,522||37,760||48,767|
The next table shows the duration of residence in New Zealand of persons born overseas.
|Years of Residence||1956 Census||1961 Census||1966 Census|
|Number||Percentages Specified Cases||Number||Percentages Specified Cases||Number||Percentages Specified Cases|
|55 and over||18,088||5.9||20,591||6.1||27,360||7.0|
STATISTICS OF WORLD POPULATION—The area and estimated population of the continents and selected countries at 1 July 1969 are shown in the following table. (Source: United Nations Population and Vital Statistics Report and Demographic Yearbook.)
|Continents and Countries||Area||Population|
|sq miles (000)||million|
|Ireland, Republic of||27||2.9|
|United Arab Republic||457||32.5|
The rate of natural increase (excess of births over deaths) is important to national planning. In recent years the rate of natural increase in New Zealand has been higher than for most other countries of predominantly European stock. The following table shows the numbers and rates of natural increase for the last 11 years, and emphasises the high rate for the Maori component of the population.
|Year||Total Population||Maoris||Natural increase Rates per 1,000 Mean Population|
|Births||Deaths||Natural Increase||Births||Deaths||Natural Increase||Total||Maori|
In the 10 years to 31 December 1970 New Zealand has gained by natural increase of population a total of 393,691.
COMPARISON WITH OTHER COUNTRIES—An international comparison of birth and natural-increase rates for certain countries is made in the following table. The rates, which are for 1969 are taken from the United Nations Monthly Bulletin of Statistics.
|Country||Rate per 1,000 of Population|
The following diagram shows birth and death rates and indicates the relatively high rate of natural increase in New Zealand.
The period since the Second World War was marked by a high birth rate until 1961, when the level dropped for a period of six years; this experience was also shared by Australia, Canada and the United States, as is shown in the following table.
(Source: United Nations Monthly Bulletin of Statistics and Statistical Yearbook)
|Country||Birth Rate per 1,000 Mean Population|
The decline of the birth rates over the period from 1961 was the subject of discussion by demographers, notably at the World Population Conference in 1965. This change in fertility pattern has coincided in time with increasing use of oral contraceptives; their greater effectiveness in birth control appears to have a significant influence on fertility, on at least a short-term basis. Demographers have emphasised the need for further research, stating that it is important to study demographic variables involved in the recent decline in the birth rate, including changes in age distribution, timing of marriage and birth, past success in achieving the desired family size, and changes in the desired number of children. In New Zealand, changes in the proportion of women in the child-bearing groups were not of a nature to have any significant effect on the downward trend in the birth rate.
REGISTRATION—The law as to registration of births is contained in the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1951. A birth may be registered within two months without fee at the office of the Registrar nearest the place of birth. After two months a birth is registrable only after a statutory declaration of the particulars required to be registered has been made before the Registrar by the parent or some person present at birth, and on payment of the prescribed fee. The Registrar-General may, however, register an unregistered birth irrespective of the time that may have elapsed.
Birth statistics are compiled from the records of the Registrar-General. The births covered by a year's statistics are those registered during the year. The figures do not include still births, except where multiple births are discussed. A special classification of still births is given later in this subsection.
NUMBERS AND RATES—The following table shows the numbers of births and the rates for the last 11 years.
|Year||Numbers||Rates per 1,000 of Mean Population|
REFINED BIRTH RATE—“Crude” rates of the number of births per 1,000 of the mean population, irrespective of sex or age, do not take account of variations in the proportion of women of the child-bearing ages. Refined rates are provided by computations of the legitimate birth rate per 1,000 married women of 16-44 years of age, or the total birth rate per 1,000 of all women of these ages. The following table gives both rates for census years (on the basis of the births registered in that year and the population as at the census) together with the “crude” rate for the year.
|Census Year||Birth rate per 1,000 Women 16-44 Years||“Crude” Birth rate|
|Married Women||Total Women|
The percentage of married women in the child-bearing ages was 68.2 in 1966 compared with 51.6 in 1926. A study of the figures for successive censuses reveals considerable changes in the age constitution of married women within the child-bearing ages; as the birth rate varies with age, the change in age constitution over the period is a factor which should be taken into account.
REPRODUCTION INDEX—The reproduction index is based on the fact that the future size of a population is related to the number of women in the reproductive age groups at any given time. The gross rate is based on the number of female children born, and the average number of girls that will be born to a woman during her reproductive period, while the net rate takes into account fertility rates at different ages and the percentages of female survivors at those ages, obtained from life tables. A net rate of 1.0 indicates a stationary population, and a higher rate a rising population.
Reproduction rates for the non-Maori population during the latest 11 years were as follows.
|Year||Gross Rate||Net Rate|
It must be remembered that, in New Zealand, population growth has two important components—natural increase and net migration—and that the reproduction index takes into account only natural increase. Statistics of external migration in recent years are included in the section on “Population”.
SEXES OF CHILDREN BORN—Statistics for the latest six years are given in the following table.
|Year||Number of Births of||Male Births per 1,000 Female Births|
MULTIPLE BIRTHS—The number of cases of multiple births and the proportion per 1,000 of the total (live births only) during the latest six years are shown in the following table.
|Year||Total Births||Total Cases||Cases of Twins||Cases of Triplets||Multiple Cases per 1,000 of Total Cases|
†Includes one case of quintuplets.
*Includes one case of quadruplets.
There were 61,921 confinements in 1969 resulting in live births; of these, 635 produced multiple living births and in a further 11 cases one of the twins was still born. The ratio of multiple confinements with live births to total live confinements was 1.96. In eight additional cases both twins were still born.
|Year||Cases of Twins||Cases of Triplets, Quads and Quins||Total Multiple Cases||Rate per 1,000 Confinements|
|Both Born Alive||One Born Alive, One Still Born||Both Still Born||Total||All Born Alive||One Born Alive, Two Still Born||Two Born Alive, One Still Born||All Still Born||Quads, All Alive||Quins, All Alive||Total|
|*The eight cases of triplets in 1969 comprised two cases where there were two males and one female; four cases all males; and two cases all females.|
|Average of five years||614||20||6||641||6||-||––||-||––||––||7||648||10.6|
The likelihood of still births occurring is much greater in cases of multiple births than in single cases. This is exemplified in the following table. The figures in respect of multiple cases include all cases where one or more of the children were still born.
|Year||Still-birth Cases per 100 of Total Cases (Including Still Births)|
|Single Cases||Multiple Cases|
|Average of 5 years||1.10||4.13|
AGES OF PARENTS—Information as to the relative ages of parents of legitimate living children whose births were registered in 1969 is shown in the following table for the total population.
|Age of Father, in Years||Age of Mother, in Years|
|Under 21||21-24||25-29||30-34||35-39||40-44||45-49||50-54||55-64||65 and Over||Total Cases|
|*Including seven cases of triplets and nine cases where one of the twins was still born.|
|45 and over||-||1||-||-||3||15||32||8||6||2||67|
|45 and over||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
PREVIOUS ISSUE OF PARENTS—The following table gives for 1969 the number of previous issue, i.e., children born alive, in conjunction with the age of mother.
|Age of Mother in Years||Number of Previous Issue||Total Legitimate Cases|
|0||1||2||3||4||5||6-9||10-14||15 and Over|
|*This number represents 53,309 single cases and 565 multiple cases.|
|45 and over||9||5||3||10||10||5||17||7||1||67|
In the following table the total issue and average issue are shown for mothers by age groups where a birth occurred in 1969.
|Age of Mother, in Years||Total Mothers||Total Issue||Average Issue|
|45 and over||67||393||5.87|
It should be stressed that the averages are no more than they purport to be—viz., the average number of children (including those registered in 1969) born up to the present time to those mothers of legitimate children whose births were registered during the year. They do not purport to represent, nor do they represent, the average issue of all women of the ages shown. Furthermore, they include issue born to the existing marriages only. The averages for recent years have been as follows: 1965, 2.70; 1966, 2.61; 1967, 2.57; 1968, 2.53; and 1969, 2.53.
FIRST BIRTHS—Statistics of nuptial first confinements show that in recent years there have been reduced proportions occurring within one year after marriage and within two years after marriage.
|Year||Total Legitimate Cases||Total Legitimate First Cases||Proportion of First Cases to Total Cases||First Cases Within One Year After Marriage||First Cases Within Two Years After Marriage|
|Number||Proportion to Total First Cases||Number||Proportion To Total First Cases|
The following table gives the duration-of-marriage factor in first confinements over a longer time-series. Prior to 1962 the statistics concern births of non-Maoris only.
|Duration of Marriage in Years||Percentage of Total First Confinements|
|10 and over||1.11||1.53||0.94||0.86||0.72||0.67||0.70|
In the following table first confinements occurring to mothers in different age groups are expressed as a percentage of the total first confinements. Prior to 1962 the statistics concern confinements of non-Maoris only.
|FIRST CONFINEMENTS, BY AGE OF MOTHER|
|Age of Mother, in Years||Percentage of Total First Confinements|
|45 and over||0.04||0.03||0.09||0.03||0.06||0.03||0.05|
The average ages of mothers at the birth of their first child were as follows: 1924, 26.39; 1934, 25.90; 1944, 25.18; 1954, 25.32; 1964, 23.65; 1967, 23.31 years; 1968, 23.39 years; and 1969, 23.42 years.
EX-NUPTIAL BIRTHS—The numbers of ex-nuptial births registered during each of the latest 11 years, with the percentages, they bear to total births registered, are given in the following table. Statistics prior to 1962 concern non-Maoris only. The percentages in recent years are higher than those for Australia, Canada, United Kingdom and United States but lower than those for Sweden. Meaningful international comparisons can only be made with caution; some of the difficulties are discussed in a supplement to the January 1967 issue of the Monthly Abstract of Statistics.
|Year||Number||Percentage of Total Live Births|
The long-term trend in the rate of ex-nuptial births is indicated by the movement in the proportion of ex-nuptial births per 1,000 unmarried women—i.e., spinsters, widows, and divorced women—at the reproductive ages. The figures for census years are as follows. Up to 1961 the statistics relate to non-Maoris only; from 1966 Maoris are included.
|Census Year||Unmarried Women 15-44 Years of Age||Ex-nuptial Births||Ex-nuptial Birth rate per 1,000 Unmarried Women|
In 1969 the total number of ex-nuptial confinements was 8,047. Of these 7,966 cases were single births, 78 were twins, while there were two cases of twins in which one child was still born, and one case of live triplets. The total number of ex-nuptial live births was 8,127. From the following table, it will be seen that of the 8,047 mothers, 4,047 or 50.29 percent, were under 21 years of age.
|Age||Number of Mothers|
|45 and over||10|
Legitimation Act—The Legitimation Act 1939 stipulates that every ex-nuptial child whose parents have later married shall be deemed to have been legitimated from birth by reason of such marriage. Applications for registration must be made within three months after the date of the marriage.
The numbers of legitimations registered in each of the latest five years were as follows: 1966, 1,042; 1967, 1,387; 1968, 1,310; 1969, 1,386; 1970, 1,513.
ADOPTIONS—The Adoption Act 1955 sets out the provisions regarding the adoption of children.
The following table shows the number of adoptions which have been registered during the latest five years.
Of the 3,888 adoptions registered in 1969, 2,001 were children under the age of one year, 1,299 were aged one to four years, 359 were aged five to nine years, and 229 were aged 10 years or over.
Of the 3,888 adoptions in 1969, there were 3,500 handled by the Child Welfare Division, and, of these, 85 percent were of children of ex-birth. Of those born ex-nuptial, 95 percent were less than a year old at placement and 82 percent were placed with singers; these proportions have remained fairly constant over a number of years. As pointed out in Section 6C, Child Welfare, only about 35 percent of children of ex-nuptial birth become available for adoption.
STILL BIRTHS—Although it is compulsory to effect a birth-registration entry for a still-born child, no entry is made in the register of deaths. Particulars of causes of still births will be found in Section 4C relating to deaths. A still-born child is defined as one “which has issued from its mother after the expiration of the twenty-eighth week of pregnancy and which was not alive at the time of such issue”. Still births are not included either as births or as deaths in the various numbers and rates shown in this subsection and in that relating to deaths. The rate of 0.99 per 100 births in 1969 is the lowest rate yet recorded.
The registrations of still births during each of the latest five years were as follows.
|Year||Male Still Births||Female Still Births||Total||Male Still Births per 1,000 Female Still Births||Percentage of Still Births to—|
|Living Births||All Births|
The rate of masculinity for still births in 1969 was 1,097 males per 1,000 females as compared with 1,049 for living births.
The percentage of ex-nuptial births among still-born infants was, in 1969, 15.84 and among infants born alive 12.99.
Of the living legitimate births registered in 1969, 34 percent were first births, while of legitimate still births 37 percent were first births. Statistics over many years indicate that there is a considerably greater probability of still births at first confinements than subsequent confinements. Of the total of 625 still births in 1969, 519 were non-Maori and 106 Maori; of the Maori total 60 were males and 46 females.
FOETAL DEATHS—The Births and Deaths Registration Act 1951 stipulates that in the case of a foetal death where the child has issued from its mother after the twentieth week, and up to and including the twenty-eighth week of pregnancy, a medical practitioner or a midwife who was in attendance at the confinement shall sign and supply a certificate stating to the best of his or her knowledge and belief the cause of the foetal death, and such other particulars as may be required by the Registrar-General. A foetal death is not required to be registered as in the case of a still-born child.
REGISTRATION—The law as to registration of deaths is contained in the Births and Deaths Registration Act (Maoris are defined as persons with half or more of Maori blood and the term European or non-Maori covers all other persons.) Particulars required in the registration of a death include date, place of residence and domicile, name, occupation, sex, age, cause of death, birthplace, duration of residence in New Zealand, marital status, living issue of married persons, degree of Maori blood (if any), medical attendant by whom certified, particulars as to burial, and, in the case of the death of a married male, age of widow. Deaths are required to be registered by the funeral director within three days after the day of burial.
Although it is compulsory to effect a birth-registration entry in the case of a still-born child, no entry is made in the register of deaths. The principal Act stipulates, however, that a medical practitioner or a midwife in attendance at a confinement where a still birth occurs must furnish a certificate stating to the best of his or her knowledge and belief the cause of the still birth.
It is incumbent upon a medical practitioner to give the certificate of cause of death of any deceased person to the person required to supply information for the purpose of registering the death (the funeral director in charge of the burial). The practitioner is required to report forthwith to the Coroner any case where, in his opinion, there are any suspicious circumstances.
Deaths of Members of the Forces While Overseas—The Births and Deaths Registration Act 1951 requires the Registrar-General to compile a register containing particulars of all persons who have died while out of New Zealand on service with any Commonwealth force within the meaning of the Army Act 1950 and who at the time of their deaths were domiciled in New Zealand. Deaths registered in the War Deaths Register from 1940 onwards were not taken into account in arriving at the number and rate of deaths in New Zealand, nor were deaths of visiting overseas servicemen or prisoners of war in New Zealand. Deaths of New Zealand servicemen which occurred in New Zealand were, however, included.
NUMBERS AND RATES—New Zealand has had for many years a favourable death rate in its non-Maori population. Despite the ageing of population, the non-Maori crude death rate has remained low and this is undoubtedly due to the introduction of antibiotics and new medical techniques as well as to the expansion of health services. There has, for example, been for some years a low incidence of serious outbreaks of epidemic disease, a reduction in tuberculosis mortality, and a remarkably low non-Maori infant-rate.
The general trend of the crude non-Maori death rate in New Zealand was downward over a long period of years, reaching its lowest level during the early thirties. After that an upward trend was in evidence for some years, the figures recorded during the war years being the highest for a long time. Some of the increase over this period can be attributed to population changes in that numbers of the healthiest of the young male adult population were serving overseas, but on the other hand the strains of wartime did exact a toll on the elderly which was shown in the sharp rise in deaths resulting from diseases of the heart and nervous system.
The following table sets out the numbers of deaths and the crude death rates per 1,000 of mean population over the latest 21 years.
|Year||Numbers||Crude Rate per 1,000 of Mean Population|
Maori crude death rates have dropped steadily over the 21-year period surveyed and have become lower than the non-Maori figures over recent years. Crude death rates do not reflect the true levels of mortality which exist in populations which have different age structures. The Maori population has a very much higher proportion of those at younger ages who do not contribute many deaths to the total and conversely relatively few persons at older ages where the rate of dying is high. The effect of this is to produce a very deflated crude rate.
Simple arithmetic can be employed to produce a figure for the Maori which compares directly with the non-Maori crude rate. By applying the Maori death rates at each age to the non-Maori population of this age it is possible to total these and arrive at the number of deaths which would have occurred in the non-Maori population had the Maori rates of dying applied. This figure divided by the total non-Maori population produces a Maori rate which is adjusted to the age structure of the non-Maori in that particular year and which is directly comparable with the non-Maori crude rate. The adjusted Maori rates computed on this system are entered in the following table for 1966 and show in a true comparison Maori mortality to be approximately twice that of the non-Maori. In addition, a comparison is supplied in age-specific rates for the two races in each sex.
|Race||All Ages Rates per 10,000 Mean Population||Age-specific Rates per 10,000 of Population at Ages|
|Crude Rate||Maori Rate Adjusted to Non-Maori Population||Under 5 Years||5-14 Years||15-24 Years||25-44 Years||45-64 Years||65 Years and Over|
For both Maoris and non-Maoris the death rate in males exceeds the death rate in females by a considerable margin. The following table sets out the respective crude rates for each sex separately for the latest 11 years in the total population.
|Year||Deaths per 1,000 of Mean Population||Male Deaths to Every 100 Female Deaths|
DISTRIBUTION OF DEATHS OVER THE YEAR—An examination of the total number of deaths registered in each quarter of the last 12 years gives the following averages: March quarter, 4,806; June quarter, 5,642; September quarter, 6,533; and December quarter, 5,507.
A classification according to month of death shows that in 1969 the months during which the greatest number of deaths occurred were July, August, and June, with totals of 2,452, 2,292, and 2,165 respectively. Excluding December (a proportion of deaths occurring in that month not being registered till January) February had the least number of deaths, 1,659, followed by January with 1,792.
AGES AT DEATH—Deaths registered during the year 1969 are shown according to age in the following tables.
|Age, in Years||Males||Females||Total|
|100 and over||8||16||24|
The Maori population is a very young one compared with the non-Maori and as a result there is a considerable variation in the proportions of Maori deaths which take place at various ages to the proportions of non-Maori deaths at various ages. Thus it follows that there is a considerable difference in the proportion of Maori deaths in the total of deaths at various ages, and whereas at preschool, school, adolescent, and early working ages the Maori contributes substantially to the total of all deaths, in old age the Maori percentage is almost insignificant. The following table illustrates these points for the year 1969.
|Age, in Years||Number of Deaths||Percentage of Total Deaths||Percentage of Maori Deaths in Total Deaths per Age Group|
|65 and over||12,728||380||55.75||28.57||2.90|
Considerable changes have taken place over the last 30 years in the age distribution of persons dying. The movement in the proportions of deaths occurring at the different age groups is very striking. The results of three main factors are illustrated, viz, health measures, which have achieved an immense saving of young life; the fluctuations in the birth rate over the period; and the great increase in the proportion of old people in the community.
|Age, in Years||Number of Deaths||Percentage of Total|
|80 and over||2,085||2,876||4,018||6,253||15.26||16.26||20.90||27.21|
During the earlier period covered by the next table the fall in the death rate was common to all ages and to both sexes. In more recent years, however, there has been a tendency for the male rates at ages over 65 years to rise to the level of earlier years. Of special significance are the low rates recorded in infancy and childhood and in the early adult life age groups in recent years despite the inclusion of Maori figures, which are considerably higher than the non-Maori. The female rate for the various age groups is now lower than the male rate in all instances. The increase in the death rate at successive age groups from 15 years onward is well exemplified.
|Year||Under 1*||1-4||5-14||15-24||25-34||35-44||45-54||55-64||65-74||75 and Over|
*Per 1,000 live births in this case.
†Non-Maori figures only as Maori deaths at ages not available for these years.
|(Rates per 1,000 of mean population in each age group)|
The average (arithmetic mean) age at death of non-Maori persons of each sex at 10-yearly intervals, since 1901 and during each of the latest six years is as follows:
There has been a striking upward movement in the average age at death of non-Maoris since 1901. A noticeable feature is that in the earlier years the age for females was considerably lower than that for males, the margin gradually narrowing until virtual equality was reached in 1927-28, since when the female average age at death has been higher than the male.
The average age of death of Maoris in 1969 was 44.67 and 45.89 years for males and females respectively. The great disparity between Maori figures and those for non-Maoris quoted in the above table is of course due in the main to the small numbers of persons at older ages in the Maori population and the comparatively large numbers at younger ages. This factor combined with high death rates in infancy and childhood produces a low average age at death.
EXPECTATION OF LIFE—Life tables depicting the pattern of mortality over the age span of life for the non-Maori component of New Zealand's population have been constructed at various times since 1880. The most recent tables prepared by the Department of Statistics are based on the 1966 population census, together with mortality statistics for 1965-67.
Life tables contain a measure of the degree of longevity of the population called the “expectation of life”. The expectation of life at any age is the average remaining lifetime for persons of this age, assuming that mortality rates at each age continue at the level shown by the life table. The life expectancy at selected ages at the present time, for the non-Maori population in New Zealand, is shown in the table below. The overall longer span of life enjoyed by females compared with males, is evident, as is the improvement in life expectancy once the first year of life is survived.
|LIFE EXPECTANCY FOR NON-MAORI POPULATION, SELECTED AGES|
|Exact Age (Years)||Life Expectancy (Years)||Exact Age (Years)||Life Expectancy (Years)|
The long-term trend since 1880 for non-Maoris has been a steady improvement in life expectancy for both sexes. The improvement has been striking for the younger ages but relatively small for the advanced ages. Progress in medical science, coupled with improved social conditions, has resulted in substantial reductions in mortality for all ages up to middle age. However, over the 1960-62 to 1965-67 period higher rates of mortality have occurred for males for most ages beyond childhood, resulting from a higher prevalence of organic diseases (heart disease, cancer) and accidents. This has resulted in a marginal decrease of life expectancy at most ages, while for females, life expectancy has increased, though at a reduced rate. The next table displays the life expectancy revealed by each life table compiled since 1880 for the three exact ages of 0, 20, and 60 years.
|NON-MAORI LIFE EXPECTANCY SINCE 1880|
|Life Table||Life Expectancy (Years)|
|Males Aged Exactly||Females Aged Exactly|
The table below compares the life expectancy at birth for the total population of New Zealand with that for selected overseas countries. (Source: United Nations Demographic Yearbook 1967).
|LIFE EXPECTANCY AT BIRTH, SELECTED COUNTRIES|
|Country||Period||Life Expectancy at Birth (Years)|
|*Excluding full-blooded aborigines.|
|England and Wales||1963-65||68.3||74.4|
The expectation of life at various ages for the Maori population is shown below. These expectations are taken from Maori Life Tables, 1965-67.
|LIFE EXPECTANCY FOR MAORI POPULATION, SELECTED AGES|
|Exact Age (Years)||Life Expectancy (Years)|
Life expectancy at birth for a Maori male increased by 2.39 years in the interval 1960-62 to 1965-67, with that for females increasing by 3.41 years. These increases are larger than those over the period 1955-57 to 1960-62, when they were 1.82 years for males and 2.69 years for females. This shows the continuing improvement in Maori life expectancy.
The expectation of life of Maoris is shorter than that of the non-Maori population, but the differences are being gradually reduced. A comparison at age 0 shows that life expectancy is 7.23 years greater for non-Maori males and 10.06 years greater for non-Maori females. For the period 1960—62, the differences were 10.12 years and 13.14 years respectively.
DEATHS BY CAUSES—The accuracy of death data even in medically certified deaths will be affected by two factors—the proportion of deaths in hospitals where diagnostic equipment is available and the proportion of deaths in which a post-mortem report is available for reference. In 1969, 66 percent of deaths of non-Maoris and 53 percent of deaths of Maoris took place in a hospital, and in 31 percent of non-Maori and 35 percent of Maori deaths a post-mortem was held. The Maori figure of post-mortems held is a little misleading as deaths from accident and violence form a much higher proportion of Maori deaths and in these circumstances a post-mortem is ordered to be held in almost every case. The lower proportion of other deaths followed by an autopsy in Maoris is due to the traditional resistance to interference with a body after death, as well as to the proportion of Maoris who live in rural areas where the services of a pathologist are not available to conduct post-mortem examinations.
The Eighth (1965) Revision of the International Classification of Diseases, Injuries, and Causes of Death replaced the Seventh (1955) Revision with effect from 1 January 1968. Where component diseases or conditions of certain categories were changed radically, there are no comparable categories under previous classifications. Where this is the case, figures for previous years have been omitted from some tables and replaced with an asterisk (*).
Total deaths and the rates per million of total population for the latest three years, classified according to the Abbreviated List of 50 Causes for Tabulation of Mortality, are contained in the following table. Certain diseases (cholera, plague, smallpox, typhus, and malaria) are not listed in the table as there were no deaths from these causes in the years shown.
|Causes of Death||Number of Deaths||Rate per Million of Mean Population|
|*No comparable category in earlier years.|
|Bacillary dysentery and amoebiasis||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|Enteritis and other diarrhoeal diseases||*||*||48||47||*||*||17||17|
|Tuberculosis of respiratory system||99||62||78||73||37||23||28||26|
|Other tuberculosis, including late effects||12||15||27||27||5||5||10||10|
|Streptococcal sore throat and scarlet fever||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|Syphilis and its sequelae||9||7||8||8||3||3||3||3|
|All other infective and parasitic diseases||81||48||67||101||30||18||24||37|
|Malignant neoplasms, including neoplasms of lymphatic and haematopoietic tissue||3,852||3,841||4,069||4,188||1,432||1,411||1,476||1,516|
|Benign neoplasms and neoplasms of unspecified nature||51||42||42||42||19||15||15||15|
|Avitaminosis and other nutritional deficiency||*||*||10||12||*||*||4||4|
|Active rheumatic fever||12||6||6||8||5||2||2||3|
|Chronic rheumatic heart disease||190||174||300||292||71||64||109||106|
|Ischaemic heart disease||*||*||6,953||6,699||*||*||2,523||2,424|
|Other forms of heart disease||*||*||1,165||1,109||*||*||423||401|
|Bronchitis, emphysema and asthma||*||*||920||943||*||*||334||341|
|Intestinal obstruction and hernia||134||122||116||88||50||45||42||32|
|Cirrhosis of liver||72||73||79||79||27||27||29||29|
|Nephritis and nephrosis||135||146||97||112||50||53||35||41|
|Hyperplasia of prostate||92||74||72||64||34||27||26||23|
|Other complications of pregnancy, child-birth and the puerperium, delivery without mention of complication||*||*||13||13||*||*||5||5|
|Birth injury, difficult labour and other anoxic and hypoxic conditions||*||*||253||177||*||*||92||64|
|Other causes of perinatal mortality||*||*||318||316||*||*||115||114|
|Symptoms and ill-defined conditions||146||103||134||123||54||38||49||45|
|All other diseases||2,201||2,191||2,145||2,019||820||803||778||731|
|Motor vehicle accidents||567||620||548||582||211||227||199||211|
|All other accidents||853||820||906||778||318||300||329||282|
|Suicide and self-inflicted injuries||246||274||265||278||92||100||96||101|
|All other external causes||22||38||34||57||8||14||12||21|
In a variety of conditions and in external causes of death the mortality rate for Maoris is very much higher than the non-Maori experience. Much of this disparity is concealed, however, by crude rates which are calculated by dividing the total population into the number of deaths from any particular disease or circumstance. With two populations so very dissimilar in age structure as are the two races in New Zealand (at ages under five years non-Maoris are seven times more numerous than Maoris, but at ages 75 years and upward they are 85 times as numerous), it is necessary to resort to an adjustment of Maori rates so that the figures for any condition become directly comparable in any particular year. This has been done in the following table by firstly calculating age-specific rates for the Maori and then applying these to the non-Maori population, age group to age group. This computation provides an “expected” number of Maori deaths in each age group and these added together and then divided by the non-Maori population give an adjusted rate. In addition to the rates expressed per million of population the absolute numbers of deaths in the two races are furnished for the same 50 causes.
|Causes of Death||Number of Deaths||Rates per Million of Population (Non-Maori: Crude Rate—Maori: Adjusted Rate)|
|*No comparable category in earlier years.|
|Bacillary dysentery and amoebiasis||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|Enteritis and other diarrhoeal diseases||30||18||34||13||12||51||13||60|
|Tuberculosis of respiratory system||60||18||48||25||24||214||19||271|
|Other tuberculosis, including late effects||14||13||19||8||6||136||7||67|
|Streptococcal sore throat and scarlet fever||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|Syphilis and its sequelae||7||1||7||1||3||5||3||34|
|All other infective and parasitic diseases||54||13||84||17||21||52||33||83|
|Malignant neoplasms, including neoplasms of lymphatic and haematopoietic tissue||3,896||173||4,036||152||1,534||2,355||1,575||2,105|
|Benign neoplasms and neoplasms of unspecified nature||37||5||39||3||15||46||15||25|
|Avitaminosis and other nutritional deficiency||10||-||12||-||4||-||5||-|
|Active rheumatic fever||3||3||6||2||1||10||2||12|
|Chronic rheumatic heart disease||257||43||256||36||101||484||100||328|
|Ischaemic heart disease||6,755||198||6,490||209||2,659||3,564||2,533||3,525|
|Other forms of heart disease||1,074||91||1,024||85||423||1,666||400||1,610|
|Bronchitis, emphysema and asthma||855||65||885||58||337||1,183||346||963|
|Intestinal obstruction and hernia||110||6||82||6||43||64||32||35|
|Cirrhosis of liver||73||6||73||6||29||74||28||79|
|Nephritis and nephrosis||87||10||97||15||34||88||38||186|
|Hyperplasia of prostate||71||1||63||1||28||14||25||34|
|Other complications of pregnancy, childbirth and the puerperium, delivery without mention of complication||11||2||10||3||4||10||4||14|
|Birth injury, difficult labour and other anoxic and hypoxic conditions||222||31||143||34||87||83||56||88|
|Other causes of perinatal mortality||278||40||269||47||109||106||105||122|
|Symptoms and ill-defined conditions||126||8||113||10||50||116||44||231|
|All other diseases||2,015||130||1,887||132||793||1,647||737||1,695|
|Major vehicle accidents||469||79||492||90||185||426||192||531|
|All other accidents||827||79||698||80||326||590||273||422|
|Suicide and self-inflicted injuries||259||6||271||7||102||41||106||51|
|All other external causes||31||3||44||13||12||11||17||73|
Age-specific rates and Maori age-adjusted rates have been published for a comprehensive list of diseases in Maori-European Standards of Health, one of a series of special reports issued by the Department of Health.
The comparatively poor state of health of the Maori is shown by the excess in the Maori adjusted rates for most diseases. As can be seen in the table, the absolute numbers of Maoris dying from any cause of death is small. This is because the Maori population has a high proportion of young people, and most diseases which cause death develop at the older ages.
The susceptibility of the Maori to epidemic and communicable disease is well known. Again there is a Maori excess mortality in cancer and diabetes. The disparity is also very noticeable in acute rheumatic fever and chronic rheumatic heart disease; in certain other forms of degenerative heart disease and hypertension; in both acute and chronic chest conditions, and in gastro-intestinal and kidney infections. Recent health surveys have indicated that an inclination towards overnutrition, combined with a racial predisposition to excess weight, may underlie the early development of degenerative conditions and the high incidence of metabolic disorders.
In addition to the greater susceptibility to disease processes, the Maori shows a much higher accident rate. Especially accident prone is the Maori child and young adult, while proportionately many more Maoris are involved in road fatalities.
Tuberculosis—While there has been a remarkable reduction in tuberculosis mortality in recent years due to the introduction of modern drug treatment, this disease is far from eradicated and still takes its toll of life.
The following table shows the number of deaths from tuberculosis in 1969 by race, sex, and age groups. The disease has almost entirely disappeared as a cause of death in non-Maori children and 85 percent of the deaths occurred at ages upward of 45 years. In the Maori the highest proportion of the total deaths from tuberculosis occurs in the ages between 35 and 54 years.
Of the 67 non-Maori deaths, 48 were due to respiratory tuberculosis and of the 33 Maori deaths, 25 were from a respiratory form.
|Age, in Years||Non-Maori||Maori||Total Population|
|85 and over||4||1||5||1||1||2||5||2||7|
|All ages, rates per 100,000 of mean population||3.8||1.5||2.6||15.1||14.6||14.8||4.7||2.5||3.6|
The fall in tuberculosis mortality became steep from 1945 onwards. The extent of this decline at various age levels in both numbers and rates is shown in the table which follows. All forms of tuberculosis are included and both sexes have been combined in the periods stated.
|Age Groups, in Years||Annual Average Number of Deaths||Rate per Million Mean Population|
|65 and over||36||35||36||46||37||181||175||163||203||161|
|65 and over||7||6||5||6||4||2,185||1,720||1,397||1,465||962|
Over a period both the non-Maori and the Maori rates have dropped; the greatest reduction being at ages under 25 years. The more chronic forms of tuberculosis remain a problem in middle and old age.
Latest international statistics from the 1970 World Health Statistics Report give the following mortality rates per 100,000 population for tuberculosis of the respiratory system for selected countries; Netherlands, 1.1; New Zealand, 3.4; Denmark, 1.4; Canada, 2.7; Australia, 1.5; United States, 3.2; Norway, 3.0; Sweden, 4.0; England and Wales, 3.0. Many other countries have much higher rates.
Cancer—A detailed report on cancer mortality and morbidity in New Zealand was issued in 1969 by the National Health Statistics Centre of the Department of Health. This report covers mortality from cancer from 1957 to 1968, and also surveys all cases reported to the National Cancer Registry by hospitals and by the various cancer clinics established in New Zealand under the auspices of the Cancer Society of New Zealand. In addition to discussion of the total cancer picture in New Zealand, an analysis is made by specific sites broken down under the following subheadings: the age and sex of new cases registered, incidence, survival experience, treatment stage of disease at time of diagnosis, and period elapsing between first symptoms and diagnosis. Under each of these headings a comparison is made of the New Zealand figures with those available from registries in some other countries, while in the principal sites the New Zealand mortality is contrasted with that of some 24 other countries of the world.
Attention is drawn to the transference, under the 1948 Revision of the International Classification, of Hodgkin's disease, leukaemia, etc., into the category of malignant disease. This classification was introduced in New Zealand in 1950, and all cancer figures quoted for that and subsequent years include these conditions*.
Cancer is annually responsible for more deaths in New Zealand than any other cause except diseases of the heart. While it is most prevalent in middle and old age, cancer is a leading cause of death at all ages, even among children and adolescents.
In 1969 there were 4,175 deaths from cancer, of which 150 were Maori. While the 1969 non-Maori crude cancer death rate of 155.1 was twice as high as the Maori crude rate of 66.5 (both per 100,000 of population), these figures are misleading as a measure of the incidence of malignant disease in the two groups. When allowance is made for the comparatively few persons in the Maori population at older ages where cancer is most frequently diagnosed, it is seen that Maori cancer mortality is markedly higher than non-Maori cancer mortality. This fact is no indication at all that in general the Maori is more prone to cancer (in cancers of the intestines in both sexes and in two sites in the Maori female, the cervix and the lung, the incidence appears to be higher), but that there is more delay in reporting the symptoms of cancer by Maoris and that more cancer in Maoris goes untreated.
A summary of numbers, crude rates and standardised mortality ratios is provided in the following table.
|Year||Number of Deaths from Cancer||Crude Death Rate per 100,000||Standardised Mortality Ratios*||Number of Deaths from Cancer||Crude Death Rate per 100,000||Standardised Mortality Ratios*|
|*The 1965 Revision of the International Classification transferred Polycythaemia Vera and Myelofibrosis into the malignant categories but these are not included in cancer figures quoted for 1969.|
The Standardised Mortality Ratio shows the number of deaths registered in the year of experience expressed as a percentage of those which would have been expected in that year had there operated the sex-age mortality of a standard period (the three years 1950-52 were chosen). The Standardised Mortality ratio has been adopted to eliminate the distorting effect of the changes which take place over a period in the age structure of the population. The standardised mortality ratio for males has risen from 96.2 in the five years 1944-48, to 103.4 in 1954-58 and 111.8 in 1964-68. This would indicate that there has been a real increase in the death toll in the male sex and this, as discussed later, is attributable to the rise in lung cancer. The mean standardised mortality ratio for females in 1944-48 was 98.0 compared with 95.2 in 1954-58 and 93.4 in 1964-68, indicating that there has been a slight fall in death rates since 1941.
A classification of cancer deaths according to age subdivisions, ethnic origin, and sex is now given. Ninety-one percent of deaths from cancer during 1969 were at ages 45 and upwards, and 56 percent were at ages 65 years and upwards.
|Age Group, in Years||Race||Males||Females|
|Numbers||Rate per 100,000 of Population at Ages||Percentage of Total Deaths at Ages||Numbers||Rate per 100,000 of Population at Ages||Percentage of Total Deaths at Ages|
|*All ages crude rate.|
|65 and over||Non-Maori||1,290||1,320.4||16.8||1,007||759.6||13.4|
Cancer contributes substantially to the total of non-Maori deaths at all ages. At school ages of five to 14 years one non-Maori death in every five is due to cancer (mainly leukaemia and tumours of the brain), while in the non-Maori female from 25 to 64 years one death in three is a cancer death.
For Maoris the proportion of cancer deaths to total deaths are very much lower than the proportions for non-Maoris, by reason that the competing risks from other diseases are so very much higher. Whereas in the non-Maori easily the highest numbers of cancer deaths occur at ages upwards of 65 years, the highest numbers in the Maori are at ages from 45 to 64 years. This is because of the lower expectation of life which results in few Maoris coming through to old age.
A summary of all cancer deaths occurring in New Zealand during 1969 by location of the disease is shown in the table which follows. Figures by site for Maoris have not been separated as the numbers are so small for most sites. Rates for Maoris tend to be higher in cancers involving the digestive tract, the respiratory organs, and the female genital organs.
|CANCER DEATHS 1969|
|Site of Disease||Numbers||Rates per Million of Mean Population|
|Buccal cavity and pharynx||43||14||57||31||10||20|
|Intestine, except rectum||197||296||493||142||212||177|
|Lung bronchus and trachea||645||117||762||464||84||274|
|Bone and connective tissue||25||14||39||18||10||14|
|Other and unspecified parts of uterus||-||54||54||-||39||20|
|All other and unspecified sites||485||452||937||349||324||337|
|Leukaemia and aleukaemia||97||94||191||70||67||69|
|Lymphosarcoma and other neoplasms of lymphatic and haematopoietic||111||98||209||80||70||75|
There is considerable variation in the numbers and rates for different sites in both males and females. The site principally involved in the male is the lung and bronchus and almost one male cancer death in every four relates to this site. Cancer of the stomach is very much more common in the male than the female but the position is reversed in cancer involving the intestines. The leading site in the female is the breast, which contributes almost one-fifth to total female cancer deaths.
The world-wide phenomenal increase over the last 30 years in cancer of the lung and bronchus (excluding trachea and pleura) is accepted as being associated with cigarette smoking and atmospheric pollution. The following table shows the increase in deaths from cancer of this site in each group and in each sex over the latest 11 years.
|Year||Number of Deaths from Cancer of Lung and Bronchus||Crude Rate per 100,000 of Mean Population|
The crude rates for the Maori conceal the true relative incidence of lung cancer. Adjusted to the non-Maori population structure, the Maori rates exceed the non-Maori rates, the greatest margin being in the female.
While cancer is undoubtedly increasing in numerical incidence it is not doing so out of proportion to the population exposed to the cancer risk. The following table shows the movement in the standardised mortality ratio, the standard population employed being that of New Zealand 1950-52.
|Buccal cavity and pharynx||65||63||59||74||102||72||111||50|
|Large intestine, except rectum||97||107||122||108||97||88||87||99|
|Biliary passages and liver||144||135||62||129||105||80||29||86|
|Lung, bronchus and trachea||185||197||232||236||155||158||198||221|
|Skin (including melanoma)||100||112||120||185||122||132||163||110|
|Uterus all parts||-||-||-||-||74||78||63||67|
|Ovary fallopian tube||-||-||-||-||103||96||99||105|
|Bladder, urinary organs||123||108||120||95||104||87||117||113|
|Brain nervous system||129||117||104||158||150||135||115||100|
|Lympho sarcoma and reticulo sarcoma||122||98||91||105||135||103||119||125|
|Leukaemia and aleukaemia||127||110||115||118||129||145||115||157|
The upward trend in the total male cancer death toll can be ascribed chiefly to the steep rise in lung and bronchus cancer, already commented upon. The total female rate has risen slightly in more recent years possibly attributable to the rise in female lung cancer.
Although there was a slight increase in 1969, stomach cancer is on the decline in both sexes and this is in accordance with the experience in several other countries. Some changes in the conditions of living are thought to underlie this drop in incidence.
Heart Disease—Diseases of the heart are the leading killer in New Zealand, accounting for 37 percent of all male deaths and 32 percent of all female deaths in 1969. In accordance with the increasing numbers of the population in the older age groups, the total numbers of deaths from heart disease have steadily increased. However, when allowance is made for the general ageing of the population by employing the standardised mortality ratio it becomes evident that there has been an increase of 6 percent in the male rate of loss from heart conditions, but in the female sex there has been a slight fall for 1965-69 as against 1959-63.
A disease phenomenon of recent years has been the rapid increase in deaths assigned to coronary heart disease, and in 1969 no less than 28 percent of all deaths were due to this single disease entity. Comparing coronary heart diseases for 1959-63 with the latest quinquennium of 1965-69 the rise in the toll of deaths assigned to coronary conditions has been 21 percent for males and 33 percent for females. It is a matter of conjecture as to whether the real incidence of coronary heart disease in the community has risen to this extent or whether it is due in part at least to increased recognition of the condition.
The numbers of deaths and standard mortality ratios for heart disease, excluding acute rheumatic forms and congenital malformations, for the last 11 years are shown in the following table, males and females separately.
|Year||All Forms of Heart Disease||Coronary Heart Disease|
|Number||Standardised Mortality Ratio*||Number||Standardised Mortality Ratio*||Number||Standardised Mortality Ratio*||Number||Standardised Mortality Ratio*|
|*Base years 1950-52 = 100|
Coronary heart disease is predominantly a disease of old age in both sexes, although in the male sex there are appreciable numbers of deaths which occur in middle age. There are marked differences in the mortality from the disease both between the sexes and between the two ethnic groups at various age periods.
The following table averages both the numbers and the age-specific rates for coronary heart disease in both non-Maoris and Maoris over the latest five years 1965-69.
|Race||Ages 35 to 44 Years||Ages 45 to 54 Years||Ages 55 to 64 Years||Ages 65 Years and Over|
|Average Number of Deaths Each Year||Average Rate per 10,000 of Population at Ages||Average Number of Deaths Each Year||Average Rate per 10,000 of Population at Ages||Average Number of Deaths Each Year||Average Rate per 10,000 of Population at Ages||Average Number of Deaths Each Year||Average Rate per 10,000 of Population at Ages|
For non-Maoris at ages 35 to 44 years male coronary heart disease rates exceed female rates by almost 5 to 1, the ratio decreasing as age advances to a ratio of under 2 to 1 at ages 65 years and upwards.
The absolute numbers of Maori deaths from the disease are small but when related to the population at risk produce rates fairly similar to the non-Maori population in the male sex.
Maori women have a very much greater chance of dying from a coronary condition than non-Maori women, the risk being three times greater at ages 35 to 44 years, almost four greater at ages 45 to 54, but twice as great at ages 55 to 64 years. Hypertensive forms of heart disease are also very much more common in Maori women in middle age while both sexes in the Maori have a higher mortality from rheumatic valvular heart disease.
INTERNATIONAL COMPARISON OF PRINCIPAL CAUSES OF DEATH—In the following table the rates per million of mean population are given for principal causes of death for selected countries for the latest available year in each case.
|Country||Year||Rates per 1,000,000 of Population|
|Heart Disease||Vascular Lesions of Central Nervous System||Cancer||Pneumonia||Accidental||Total Including Other|
|United States of America||1,966||3,709||1,046||1,551||310||580||9,509|
|England and Wales||1,966||3,784||1,640||2,250||739||397||11,724|
INFANT MORTALITY—Over a long period of years New Zealand has been renowned for the low rate of infant mortality in its non-Maori population, a fact attributable partly to such matters as climate, virility of the people, comparative absence of densely settled areas, etc., and partly to legislative and educative measures—the latter conducted by the State as well as by various organisations (one of the most important of these is the Royal New Zealand Society for the Health of Women and Children which was founded in 1907).
The trend in infant and peri-natal mortality in New Zealand up to the year 1961 and comparisons in causes with the rates of other countries which show improved figures on New Zealand's are contained in one of the Special Report Series issued by the National Health Statistics Centre of the Department of Health.
The infant-mortality rate of the non-Maori population of New Zealand is among the world's lowest, and recently has declined to a particularly low level. The Maori rate has shown a noticeable improvement in recent years. Infant-mortality figures are given in the next table.
|Year||Numbers||Rates per 1,000 of Live Births|
Male rates of infant loss are about 41 percent above female rates and this tends to counterbalance the male excess in births.
In the following table New Zealand's infant mortality rates, for both races combined, are shown in comparison with the rates for other countries. The figures are averaged over several recent years for which figures are available and the data has been extracted from the United Nations Demographic Yearbook 1968.
It is interesting to observe that Sweden has the distinction of having the lowest infant death rate in the world. Swedish figures have been based on local definitions of foetal death, livebirth, and infant death which would result in the rates being a slight understatement in a comparison with New Zealand's. Differences in definitions and practices exist also in some other countries.
|Country||Period||Deaths Under 1 Year per 1,000 Live Births|
|England and Wales||1964-68||19|
|Germany, Fed. Rep.||1964-67||24|
One out of every four infant deaths is a Maori infant death and the Maori rate of loss is nearly twice that of the non-Maori. The excess in the Maori rate is largely due to infants who die between the end of the fourth week of life and the first birthday. This is illustrated in the following table showing numbers and rates by race and age for the year 1969.
|Race||Under 1 Day||1 Day and Under 1 Week||1 Week and Under 28 Days||Total Under 28 Days||28 Days and Under 12 Months||Total Under 1 Year|
|Rates per 1,000 Live Births|
The explanation of the higher rate for Maoris between the twenty-eighth day and the end of the first year is the susceptibility of the Maori baby in its generally inferior home environment to forms of infection such as gastro-enteritis and pneumonia.
The rates per 1,000 live births for the two sexes combined at different ages during the first year of life are now given for each of the last 11 years.
|Year||Under 1 Day||1 Day and Under 2 Days||2 Days and Under 1 Week||1 Week and Under 28 Days||28 Days and Under 12 Months 1||Under 1 Day 1||1 Day and Under 2 Days||2 Days and Under 1 Week||1 Week and Under 28 Days||28 Days and Under 12 Months|
The following diagram illustrates infant mortality rates.
The next table shows the movement in the rates since 1922 in nine quinquennia and the years 1967-68, and 1969.
|Period||Neonatal Mortality (Under 28 Days)||Post-neonatal Mortality (28 Days and Under 12 Months)||Infant Mortality (Under 1 Year)|
The sharp drop in rates in the post-war years reflects the general availability of antibiotics. Three conditions, prematurity, birth injury, and post-natal asphyxia, together cause about two-thirds of the total neonatal deaths. Factors which underlie the generally higher rates for Maoris are the higher proportion of Maori confinements outside of hospitals, more frequent child bearing, and a reluctance to seek and heed antenatal advice.
The Maori infant who survives the first month of life is especially susceptible to respiratory infections such as influenza, pneumonia, and bronchitis, and to gastro-intestinal disorders. Environmental factors and circumstances associated with the Maori way of life underlie the onset of these diseases, such as unsatisfactory feeding associated with failure to seek and act upon skilled advice from Plunket and district nurses on matters such as feeding, and also poor housing and sanitary conditions.
Causes of Infant Mortality—In the following table are shown the absolute numbers and the rate per 1,000 live births of the principal causes of infant mortality during 1968 and 1969, for non-Maoris, Maoris and both groups combined.
|Cause of Death||Number of Deaths||Rate per 1,000 Live Births|
|Influenza, pneumonia, and bronchitis||206||141||2.4||9.0||3.3||1.8||5.5||2.2|
|Birth injury, with and without mention of cause, including asphyxia, anoxia or hypoxia||67||46||1.1||0.9||1.1||0.6||1.3||0.7|
|Complications of pregnancy and childbirth, including conditions of placenta and umbilical cord||178||228||2.9||2.8||2.8||3.5||4.5||3.6|
|Anoxic and hypoxic conditions not elsewhere classified||186||124||3.0||2.9||3.0||1.9||2.4||2.0|
|Other and undefined causes||279||228||3.8||8.8||4.5||3.2||6.7||3.6|
There has been a considerable saving of life in Maori babies in almost all the leading causes over the last 10 years.
CAUSES OF STILL BIRTH—A still-born child or late foetal death is defined in New Zealand as one “which has issued from its mother after the expiration of the twenty-eighth week of pregnancy and which was not alive at the time of such issue”. A certificate of the cause of death is required to be furnished for each still birth and also for cases of intermediate foetal deaths—i.e., deaths after the end of the twentieth but before the end of the twenty-eighth week of pregnancy. The certificates of causes of still birth and foetal death provide for both maternal and foetal causes to be entered.
The following table sets down the causes of the still births registered during 1969.
|Causes of Still Birth||Number of Cases|
|*Includes 5 cases of sex not determined.|
|Diseases and conditions not associated with pregnancy||16||10||26|
|Toxaemias of pregnancy||55||38||93|
|Other diseases and conditions of pregnancy and childbirth||28||21||49|
|Difficulties in labour||18||10||28|
|Placental and cord conditions||94||99||193|
|Diseases of foetus and ill-defined causes||67||70||137|
|Totals, all causes||323||297||625|
PERINATAL MORTALITY—Perinatal deaths comprise still births and deaths in the first week of life. Numbers and rates are shown in the following table. The still births and the perinatal mortality rate are calculated per 1,000 total births (still births plus live births), while the death rate for the first week of life is calculated per 1,000 live births.
|Deaths under 1 week||638||596||10.4||9.1||10.2||9.2||11.8||9.5|
PUERPERAL CAUSES—Improvements in the standard of antenatal care and obstetrical skill, as well as advances in medical science, have reduced the numbers of deaths from septic abortion, puerperal sepsis, and toxaemia, and deaths from complications of childbirth are few. A summary of maternal mortality from all puerperal causes, in triennial periods, is given in the following table.
|Cause of Death||1947-49||1950-52||1953-55||1956-58||1959-61||1962-64||1965-67||1968||1969|
|Eclampsia and other toxaemias||38||33||28||24||10||13||8||1||2|
|Accidents, haemorrhage, and other mortality||82||53||34||43||40||24||20||11||8|
|Total maternal mortality||149||104||72||77||65||45||35||13||11|
|Maternal mortality, excluding septic abortion||127||90||63||69||53||38||31||13||11|
|Eclampsia and other toxaemias||7||5||3||2||5||2||2||-||1|
|Accidents, haemorrhage, and other mortality||27||20||21||24||15||16||11||2||2|
|Total maternal mortality||37||31||29||29||20||20||14||2||3|
|Maternal mortality, excluding septic abortion||37||28||26||27||20||19||14||2||3|
|Eclampsia and other toxaemias||45||38||31||26||15||15||10||1||3|
|Accidents, haemorrhage, and other mortality||109||73||55||67||55||40||31||13||10|
|Total maternal mortality||186||135||101||106||85||65||49||15||14|
|Maternal mortality, excluding septic abortion||164||118||89||96||73||57||45||15||14|
The following table shows the progressive reduction that has been achieved in the rates of deaths due to puerperal causes.
|Year||Rate per 1,000 Live Births|
DEATHS FROM EXTERNAL CAUSES—Deaths from external causes, apart from suicide, claim approximately 6 percent of the total deaths and again the Maori rate higher than the non-Maori. The following table shows deaths from external causes for the three latest years classified according to the Intermediate List of the 1965 Revision of the International Classification which has made no changes in the categories listed. In this table falls on board ship and from horseback are included as transport fatalities.
|Causes of Death||Number of Deaths||Rate per Million of Mean Population|
|*Includes drowning from water transport.|
|Other transport accidents||46||42||35||17||15||13|
|Accidents caused by machinery||44||45||48||16||16||17|
|Accidents caused by fire and explosion of combustible material||62||31||34||23||11||12|
|Accidents caused by hot substance, corrosive liquid, steam, and radiation||18||8||6||7||3||2|
|Accidents caused by firearms||25||21||9||9||8||3|
|Accidental drowning and submersion*||129||205||123||47||75||44|
|All other accidental causes||106||129||133||39||47||48|
|Homicide and injury purposely inflicted by other persons (not in war)||37||20||31||14||7||11|
The number of deaths recorded from all accidental causes in 1969 was 1,375 corresponding to a rate of 4.9 per 10,000 of population.
Drownings are a leading cause of accidental death in New Zealand. Included in the preceding table for 1969 are 46 deaths from drowning due to accidents in water transport, of which nine were crew members of fishing trawlers.
Transport Accidents—In classifying deaths attributable to transport accidents under the various subheadings shown in the following table the rule of assignment is that in fatalities due to collisions of railway trains and electric tram cars with motor vehicles, the death is assigned to the railway train or electric tram car as being the heavier and more powerful vehicle. For 1969 there were 5 deaths from such accidents, bringing the total number of deaths in cases where a motor vehicle was involved up to 587. In the case of collisions between motor vehicles and horse—drawn vehicles, the death is assigned to the motor vehicle.
The number and rate of deaths resulting from railway, tramway, motor vehicle, and aircraft accidents during each of the last 11 years are as follows.
|Year||Deaths Due to Accident||Rate per 10,000 of Mean Population|
|Railway||Tramway||Motor Vehicle||Aircraft||Railway||Tramway||Motor Vehicle||Aircraft|
In recent years the wide use of aircraft in agricultural operations such as aerial topdressing has resulted in a number of deaths from aircraft accidents. Road accidents are further analysed in the section on Roads and Road Transport.
Non-transport Accidents—The 1965 Revision of the International List makes provision for non-transport accidents (excluding therapeutic misadventure in treatment, complications following vaccination or inoculation, and late effects of injury and poisoning) to be grouped according to the place where the accident or poisoning occurred. The following table shows the deaths, both numbers and rates, for the latest three years, according to this classification.
|Place of Occurrence||Number||Rate per Million of Mean Population|
|Home (including home premises and vicinity and any non-institutional place of residence)||336||347||262||123||126||94|
|Farm (including buildings and land under cultivation, but excluding farm and home premises)||46||50||51||17||18||18|
|Mine and quarry||25||7||7||9||2||2|
|Industrial place and premises||29||39||27||11||15||10|
|Place for recreation and sport||8||13||26||3||5||9|
|Street and highway||12||11||25||4||4||9|
|Public building (building used by the general public or a particular group of the public)||8||12||12||3||4||4|
|Resident institution (homes, hospitals, etc.)||94||125||116||34||43||42|
|Other specified places||136||118||114||50||45||41|
|Place not specified||60||25||72||22||9||26|
One in every two fatal non-traffic accidents occurs in or about the home.
Falls are the chief cause of home fatalities, exacting a heavy toll of the aged and infirm. This is clearly illustrated in a special report on domestic accidents issued by the Department of Health in 1970. Another important cause of death in the home is asphyxia from regurgitation of food and inhalation of other objects, or mechanically from pillows and bedclothes; this is the principal hazard of the first six months of life, though a proportion of these deaths is probably due to some undisclosed respiratory infections. Almost all the home drowning fatalities are amongst toddlers between one and two years of age who fall into rivers, creeks, and ponds in the vicinity of the home.
Twenty-nine of the 51 accidental deaths on farms in 1969 were caused by farm machinery (usually tractors). Further data regarding accidents will be found elsewhere in this volume (see Index). Later sections are devoted wholly to statistics of industrial and farm accidents.
Suicide—There were 271 suicidal deaths of non-Maoris in 1969—177 males and 94 females—the death rate per 100,000 of population being 13.8 for males and 7.3 for females. For Maoris there were seven suicidal deaths—four males and three females—the death rates per 100,000 population being 3.6 for males and 2.7 for females.
Rates per 100,000 of population showing the age distributions, averaged over the years 1967, 1968 and 1969 are shown next for the total population.
These figures show the typical increase in the suicide rates with increasing age and the fall in the rates after the age of 75.
The next table presents the average, over three-yearly periods, of standardised mortality ratios of suicides, standardised on years 1950-52 = 100.
|Annual Average During||Males||Females|
The following table provides an international comparison of suicide rates for various countries. The figures have been extracted from the United Nations Demographic Yearbook 1969.
|Country||Year||Rate per 100,000 of Population|
|England and Wales||1,968||9.4|
|Germany, Fed. Rep||1,967||21.3|
GENERAL—Marriage may be solemnised in New Zealand either by a person whose name is on the list of officiating ministers under the Marriage Act 1955, or before a duly appointed Registrar or Deputy Registrar of Marriages. A licence must be obtained from a Registrar of Marriages before a marriage by an officiating minister can be solemnised. Marriage by an officiating minister may be solemnised at any time between 6 o'clock in the morning and 8 o'clock in the evening. Marriage before a Registrar can be solemnised at any time during the hours the office of the Registrar is open for the transaction of public business; notice of intended marriage must be given to a Registrar of Marriages by one of the parties to the proposed marriage.
In the case of a person under 21 years of age, not being a widow or widower, the consent of parents or guardian is necessary. Consent of a Magistrate may also be given in cases of refusal by any person whose consent is required.
Since 1933 the minimum age for marriage has been 16 years of age. No marriage shall be deemed to be void, however, by reason only of an infringement of the minimum age.
Since 1 April 1952 it has been required under the Maori Purposes Act 1951 that every marriage to which a Maori is a party shall be solemnised in the same manner, and its validity shall be determined by the same law, as if each of the parties was a non-Maori.
Particulars regarding divorce will be found later in this subsection.
NUMBERS AND RATES—The numbers of marriages and rates during the last 21 years are now given.
|Year||Number||Rate per 1,000 of Population|
Comparison with Other Countries—Marriage rates for certain countries for 1969 are given below. (Source: United Nations Monthly Bulletin of Statistics.)
|Country||Rate per 1,000 Mean Population|
MARITAL STATUS PRIOR TO MARRIAGE—The following table gives marital status prior to marriage for the latest five years.
|Year||Single||Widowed||Divorced||Total Persons Married|
The position is more easily seen by studying the percentages given in the next table.
Divorce statistics at the end of this subsection show the numbers of decrees granted in recent years, the numbers varying from 1,400 to 2,200 a year. Widowed persons remarrying constituted 40 per 1,000 persons married in 1969.
The marital status of persons prior to marriage for each of the latest five years is next given.
|Year||Marriages Between Bachelors and||Marriages Between Widowers and||Marriages Between Divorced Men and|
|Spinsters||Widows||Divorced Women||Spinsters||Widows||Divorced Women||Spinsters||Widows||Divorced Women|
During the years 1938-40 there were 95 male divorcees who remarried for every 100 female divorcees who remarried. In the period 1965-69 more male divorcees than female divorcees remarried.
The number of widows per 100 widowers who remarried was 67 in 1938-40, but with a changed social outlook the position in 1967-69 was that 100 widows remarried for every 100 widowers.
AGES OF PERSONS MARRIED—The proportion of minors among persons marrying has been increased over a fairly long period. In the latest year five brides in every 11 were under 21 years of age, the proportion for grooms being one in six.
Of the 49,942 persons married in 1969, 15,354 or 30.74 percent, were under 21 years of age; 20,112 or 40.27 percent, were returned as 21-24 years; 6,969, or 13.96 percent, as 25-29 years; 3,466, or 6.94 percent, as 30-39 years; and 4,041, or 8.09 percent, as 40 years of age or over. The following table relates to the year of 1968.
|Age of Bridegroom, in years||Age of Bride, in Years||Total Bridegrooms|
|16-20||21-24||25-29||30-34||35-39||40-44||45 and over|
|45 and over||7||35||55||92||129||223||1,170||1,711|
The following table shows since 1950 the proportions of men and women married at each age group to every 100 marriages.
|Period||Under 21||21-24||25-29||30-34||35-39||40-44||45 and Over||Totals|
|*Periods prior to 1950 are for non-Maoris only.|
The average ages (arithmetic mean) at marriage for both males and females are shown in the following table.
|Year||Average Age at Marriage|
The average ages of bachelors and spinsters at marriage are considerably lower than those shown in the preceding table, which covers all parties and is naturally affected by the inclusion of remarriages of widowed and divorced persons. The average ages of grooms and brides for each of the latest five years according to marital status were as shown in the next table.
The foregoing figures give the average age at marriage, but these do not correspond with the modal or popular age, if the age at which the most marriages are celebrated may be so termed. The modal age for brides (21) has remained unchanged for very many years, but in the case of bridegrooms the most popular age has varied, and for recent years it has been 21 to 24. The modal age for bridegrooms in 1969 was 22 years.
Marriage of Minors—Of every 1,000 men married in 1969, 162 were under 21 years of age, while 452 in every 1,000 brides were under 21.
In 3,551 marriages in 1969 both parties were given as under 21 years of age, in 7,748 marriages the bride was returned as a minor and the bridegroom as an adult, and in 504 marriages the bridegroom was a minor and the bride an adult.
The proportion of minors among persons marrying has been increasing over a fairly long period, and in the table below figures are given for the last five years.
|Year||Age in Years||Totals|
|16||17||18||19||20||Number||Rate per 100 Marriages|
MARRIAGES BY MINISTERS OF VARIOUS CHURCHES—Of the 24,971 marriages performed in 1969, Anglican clergymen officiated at 6.479, Presbyterians at 5,955, Roman Catholics at 3,828, Methodists at 1,999, and clergymen of other churches at 1,960 while 4,750 marriages were solemnised by Registrars.
The following table shows the proportions of marriages by ministers of the largest churches and before Registrars in each of the seven latest years.
|Church||Percentage of Marriages|
The foregoing figures must not be taken as an exact indication of the religious professions of the parties married, as it does not necessarily follow that both (or even one) of the parties are adherents of the Church whose officiating minister performed the ceremony, and persons married before Registrars may belong, in greater or lesser proportion, to any or none of the churches. Of the total population at the general census of 1966, 33.7 percent were recorded as adherents of the Anglican Church, 21.8 percent Presbyterian, 15.9 percent Roman Catholic, 7.0 percent Methodist, and 21.6 percent of other religions or of no religion, or who objected to state their religious profession.
NUMBER OF OFFICIATING MINISTERS—The number of names on the list of officiating ministers under the Marriage Act was 3,897 in January 1970 and the churches to which they belong are shown hereunder.
|Roman Catholic Church||904|
|Anglican (Church of England)||692|
|Presbyterian Church of New Zealand||635|
|Methodist Church of New Zealand||351|
|Ratana Church of New Zealand||141|
|Latter Day Saints||141|
|Associated Churches of Christ||46|
|Seventh Day Adventist||36|
|Assemblies of God||36|
|Liberal Catholic Church||24|
|Christian Revival Crusade||18|
|Evangelical Lutheran Concordia Conference||15|
|Absolute Reformed Maori Church of Aotearoa||13|
|Church of Te Kooti Rikirangi||11|
|Commonwealth Covenant Church||10|
|Reformed Churches of New Zealand||9|
|Evangelistic Church of Christ||9|
The Ratana Church of New Zealand, the Ringatu Church, the United Maori Mission, and the Church of Te Kooti Rikirangi are Maori organisations.
DISSOLUTION OF MARRIAGE AND NULLITY—Applying from 1 January 1969, the Matrimonial Proceedings Amendment Act 1968 made some important changes in the legislation for grounds for divorce; the period of three years was reduced to two years for separation by agreement and decree of separation or separation order, and in cases living apart and unlikely to be reconciled the period of seven years was reduced to four years. This amending legislation had an accelerating effect on divorce statistics in 1969.
Divorce—A petition for divorce may be presented to the Supreme Court on one or more of several grounds, which include adultery, desertion, separation by agreement for not less than two years, separation by decree of separation or separation order for not less than two years, and the parties living apart for four years and not likely to be reconciled. Only a very small percentage of divorces each year are concerned with the other grounds, as a subsequent table shows. Where the parties are separated or living apart one of the parties must have been resident in New Zealand for at least two years immediately preceding the filing of the petition. The Court is required to give consideration to the possibility of reconciliation of the parties to the marriage.
Dissolution of a Voidable Marriage—Proceedings for the dissolution of a voidable marriage may be instituted by a person domiciled in New Zealand or a person whose spouse is domiciled in New Zealand on any of the following grounds, namely, that at the time of the marriage one of the parties was mentally defective, that the respondent was at that time suffering from communicable venereal disease, that the woman was then pregnant by some other man than the petitioner, or that some woman other than the petitioner was then pregnant by the respondent, or that the marriage has not been consummated because of the incapacity of either party or the respondent's wilful refusal. A decree of dissolution of a voidable marriage puts an end to the marriage from the date of the decree.
Nullity—In certain circumstances a marriage is void, that is, it is of no effect whether or not proceedings in respect of it are taken in the Courts. A decree of nullity in respect of a void marriage may, however, be obtained if either party is domiciled or resident in New Zealand or the marriage was solemnised here. The grounds on which a marriage governed by New Zealand law is void are that at the time of the ceremony one of the parties was already married or did not give consent, that the parties were within the prohibited degree of relationship or that the marriage was not solemnised in due form. Any children of a void marriage are legitimate unless at the time of the conception of the child or at the time of the marriage (whichever was later) both parties knew the marriage was void.
Petitions filed and decrees granted by the Supreme Court in recent years are shown in the following table.
|Year||Dissolution or Nullity of Marriage||Judicial Separation|
|Petitions Filed||Decrees Nisi||Decrees Absolute||Petitions Filed||Decrees for Separation|
The next table gives the grounds (dissolution or nullity cases) of petitions and decrees during 1968 and 1969.
|Grounds||Petitions Filed||Decrees Absolute Granted|
|Husbands' Petitions||Wives' Petitions||Husbands' Petitions||Wives' Petitions|
*For three years until 1968; reduced to two years 1 January 1969
†For seven years until 1968; reduced to four years 1 January 1969.
|Separation by agreement*||603||1,062||636||1,248||457||742||545||795|
|Separation by Court order or decree*||1||3||-||2||28||18||51||84|
|Drunkenness with cruelty, failure to maintain, etc.||1||2||25||10||-||-||3||3|
|Non-compliance with order for restitution of conjugal rights||-||1||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|Presumption of death||1||1||1||-||-||-||1||3|
|Pregnant to another man||2||2||-||-||-||1||-||-|
The. figures shown for decrees absolute cover all such granted during the year, whether the antecedent decree nisi was granted in the same or in a previous year.
In 749 of the 2,996 cases where decrees absolute were granted during 1969 there was no living issue of the marriage. The number of living issue was one in 627 cases, two in 700 cases, three in 459 cases, and four or more in 461 cases.
The table which follows shows the duration of marriage in all cases for which decrees absolute were granted in the latest five years.
|Duration of Marriage, in Years||Husbands' Decrees Absolute Granted||Wives' Decrees Absolute Granted|
|30 and over||80||118||82||98||133||60||57||49||57||98|
The number of living issue affected by the decrees absolute of their parents during each of the last five years as follows: 1965, 3,478; 1966, 3,984; 1967, 3,838; 1968, 4,099, and 1969, 5,604.
MARRIAGE GUIDANCE—A National Marriage Guidance Council was established in 1950 as a voluntary agency to assist with social problems arising from unhappy or maladjusted marriages. In 1959 an adviser in marriage guidance was appointed to the staff of the Justice Department. At the same time an advisory committee was set up to keep Government informed and to organise, with the assistance of appropriate professional groups, a programme for the selection, training, and accrediting of voluntary marriage counsellors.
There are now 24 councils affiliated with the National Marriage Guidance Council and these provide counselling centres staffed by nearly 100 accredited counsellors and some 40 counsellors in training. Accredited counsellors, in many centres, assist the Courts by serving as conciliators under the Domestic Proceedings Act.
The National Marriage Guidance Council employs a full-time Director to organise and co-ordinate the work of affiliated councils. There are also seven full-time Directors employed by the larger of the local councils. These appointments, made over the last three years, were necessary because of the rapid development of the Marriage Guidance Service.
Educational work includes the conducting of courses for young couples in preparation for marriage. Secondary schools have been assisted by Local Marriage Guidance Councils with the arranging of courses in personal relationships. In many cases tutors are recruited and trained by local councils.
The Marriage Guidance Service is freely available to those whose marriages are in difficulty. There is a growing acceptance by the public of the importance of this service and a greater readiness of people in trouble to make use of it.
Table of Contents
GENERAL—Responsibility for the nation's health is undertaken by a partnership of central and local government, private medical practitioners, para-medical workers, charitable and religious organisations and private citizens, with central Government providing encouragement, financial assistance and incentives, and assuming final responsibility. This has been a deliberate policy of successive Governments, although emphases have varied from time to time according to political and economic conditions and demands for specific services. Growing urbanisation and industrialisation, with consequent intensification of the problems of pollution of water, air and land, are imposing a current emphasis nationally and locally on environmental health.
In 1900, the control and supervision of public health services was centralised in a Department of State. The period 1900 to 1920 saw steady progress in the building up of public health services now that the essential basic structure had been created. Legislation was passed dealing with the sale of food and drugs, the registration of professional groups, and the control of quackery. Sanitoria were established, school medical services developed, and problems of maternal and infant health attacked. The first link between preventive and curative medicine was made in 1909 with the merging of the former Hospital and Charitable Aid Department with the new Department of Public Health.
In this period there was an increasing public interest taken in health matters, and, as a result, a number of voluntary health organisations were established with the objects of promoting better knowledge of infant welfare, first aid, and home nursing.
The influenza epidemic of 1918-19 brought to light a number of defects in the public health organisation, particularly the need for a simplification of legislation and the need for a clear definition of the duties of local authorities, hospital boards, and the Department of Public Health. The result of this experience was the passing of the Health Act 1920, which established the Department of Health in its present form, returned to local authorities a measure of responsibility for environmental health, and encouraged them to employ appropriate staff. To meet new needs and changing public attitudes, the professional resources of the Department were strengthened. Health education activity was intensified, a Medical Research Council was sponsored, and the number of groups subject to professional registration was extended. New health districts were created, and the existing activities of the Department were expanded. Among the more important of the new activities of the Department was the establishment of a school dental service in 1920 and, in 1937, the institution of the Medical Research Council.
Developments since the Second World War included a more positive attack on tuberculosis marked by the passing of the Tuberculosis Act 1948, the establishment as a Government agency of the National Radiation Laboratory at Christchurch, and the creation of the National Health Institute in Wellington. At the end of 1947 the Mental Hospitals Department ceased to be a separate Government Department, and became the Division of Mental Health of the Department of Health. Public health services have also been extended to cover occupational health, air pollution, and health education.
The Health Act 1956 is the main legislation relating to public health.
A general history of public health services may be found in Challenge for Health, by F. S. Maclean (Government Printer, 1964), while philosophy and policy are discussed in Health Administration in New Zealand (Institute of Public Administration, 1969).
ORGANISATION OF PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICES: Local Authorities—Part II of the Health Act 1956 lays definite obligations on local authorities in regard to public health. Each local authority must either appoint its own health inspectors or contribute to the salary of an inspector of the Department of Health. Each inspector must hold a certificate of the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health before he can be appointed. A local authority's responsibility in health matters is wide. It must promote and conserve the public health within its district—a function which includes regular inspections of its district; abatement of nuisances as defined in the Health Act; provision of efficient refuse, nightsoil, and sanitary services; protection and purification of water supplies; closing and demolition of insanitary buildings; registration and regulation of various kinds of premises and the enforcement of certain minimum sanitary requirements for such premises and for residences. It may also make bylaws dealing with public health matters.
Department of Health—The Department is organised into the following Divisions: Public Health, Nursing, Hospitals (described in Section 5B), Clinical Services, Dental Health, and Mental Health (Section 5c).
New Zealand as a whole is divided into 18 health districts, each under the control of a medical officer of health, a medical practitioner with special qualifications in public health.
The Department is required to ensure effective planning, execution, and co-ordination of measures necessary to promote public health. It administers all Acts relating to public health; it advises local authorities on public health; it must do whatever is possible to prevent, limit, or suppress disease; it promotes research into public health fields and the prevention and treatment of disease; it conducts health publicity and organises and controls medical, dental, and nursing services paid for from public funds. With the authority of the Minister, a medical officer of health may exercise very wide powers in the event of an epidemic or serious outbreak of infectious disease, including the requisitioning of land and buildings, prohibition of public gatherings, and controlling the movements of cases and contacts of any infectious disease. Certain diseases, mostly infectious, but including some non-communicable, must be notified by medical practitioners. Provisions relating to quarantine are included in the Health Act, and extensive power is given to make regulations relating to the conservation and promotion of public health.
The Health Act provides for a Board of Health. The Board, in addition to its traditional responsibilities in relation to local authorities and their sanitary works, now has the much wider function of giving the Minister authoritative advice on the broad aspects of public health policy and the relationship between the various health services.
In addition to the Health Act 1956, the following Acts are administered by the Department:
|Burial and Cremation Act 1964||Mental Health Act 1969|
|Dental Act 1963||Narcotics Act 1965|
|Dietitians Act 1950||Nurses and Midwives Act 1945|
|Food and Drug Act 1969||Occupational Therapy Act 1949|
|Hospitals Act 1957||Opticians Act 1928|
|Human Tissue Act 1964||Physiotherapy Act 1949|
|King George the Fifth Memorial Children's Health Camps Act 1953||Plumbers and Gasfitters Registration Act 1964|
|Maternal Mortality Research Act 1968||Poisons Act 1960|
|Medical and Dental Auxiliaries Act 1966||Radioactive Substances Act 1949|
|Medical Practitioners Act 1968||Social Security Act 1964 (Part II)|
|Medical Research Council Act 1950||Tuberculosis Act 1948|
A detailed report of the activities of the Department of Health is given in the annual report of the Director-General of Health (parliamentary paper K. 31).
The net expenditure of the Department in the four latest years is given in the following table.
|General health services||4,914||5,018||5,455||5,709|
|Medical Research Council||331||578||581||585|
|Homes for the aged||896||640||634||1,321|
|Pensioners' housing: Local authorities||872||1,010||1,008||786|
|Plunket Societies subsidies||436||459||442||563|
|Intellectually Handicapped Children's Society Incorporated and other approved organisations||141||107||48||202|
|King George V Memorial Children's Health Camps Board||105||113||124||154|
|Miscellaneous grants and subsidies||42||42||39||128|
|Vote: Health Benefits—|
|Maternity, medical, pharmaceutical, etc., benefits||37,470||39,314||41,937||46,914|
|Other departmental hospitals and institutions||542||637||320||11|
|Public hospitals: Grants to hospital boards||92,504||94,935||101,129||113,313|
|Less Departmental receipts||1,165||962||966||980|
|Expenditure as percentage of national income||4.2||4.2||4.2||4.2|
Information on hospitals is given in Sections 5B and 5c, while information on medical, hospitals, and other related benefits, which are administered by the Department of Health, is given in Section 6A (Social Security and General Welfare).
PUBLIC HEALTH—The Division of Public Health is responsible for activities under the following headings: Communicable disease and health education, food and nutrition, occupational health and toxicology, health protection (including maternal health and child health), environmental health (including food hygiene, plumbing, and drainage), burial and cremation, water supply and sewage disposal, and air pollution (including clean air and chemical works).
The Director of the Division is assisted by a Deputy, four Assistant Directors (three medical practitioners and one public health engineer), and other scientific and technical officers.
Notifiable Diseases—The control of disease is based on a system of notification which has long been in force. A list of cases in the latest year is given in Section 5B.
Venereal Diseases—Venereal diseases are only notifiable if the patient discontinues treatment before cure is effected. The Venereal Diseases Regulations 1964 give adequate powers for the examination and treatment of persons suspected of suffering from the diseases. Free treatment has been established in the larger cities and treatment is available to seamen at the main ports in accordance with the Brussels Agreement. Restrictions are also placed on the nature of the employment such persons may undertake if they are suffering from the diseases in a communicable form.
In the administration of the regulations, every precaution is taken to ensure that personal details are kept strictly confidential.
Tuberculosis Control—The Department's programme for control of tuberculosis is based on adequate case-finding and notification procedures, the proper treatment and surveillance of notified cases, investigation and control of contacts. This calls for close co-ordination of the staff and services of hospital boards (which are responsible for the diagnosis and treatment of tuberculosis) and officers of the Department of Health who deal with the social and epidemiological aspects of the disease. The latter involves supervision of tuberculosis families, tracing of contacts, and the maintenance of tuberculosis statistics.
Mass miniature radiography is now an established and important feature of the Department's case-finding programme, and, during the years 1965 to 1969, 1,388,878 persons were X-rayed in the nine mass X-ray units operated by the Department. This resulted in the discovery of 507 active cases.
B.C.G. vaccination is also undertaken by the Department and, in particular, is offered to the contacts of registered cases, secondary school children in the North Island and hospital workers possibly exposed to infection.
Over the past decade, there has been a steady decrease each year in new notifications particularly in the younger age groups together with a marked decrease in mortality.
Hydatids Eradication—The Hydatids Act 1968 provides positive methods of attack in the campaign for the eradication of hydatid disease. The Act is administered by the Department of Agriculture. Under it there has been set up a National Hydatids Council on which the Department of Health has representation.
Environmental Hygiene is concerned with the provision and proper maintenance of public water supplies and sewerage systems, the disposal of refuse, the condition of dwellinghouses, the control of offensive trades, and the hygiene of premises in which food is manufactured and sold, including eating houses. These matters are primarily the responsibility of the local authorities, but the Department of Health acts in a general advisory capacity. In the case of some of the smaller local authorities the necessary inspections are made by departmental inspectors on behalf of and by arrangement with the local authorities. The Department undertakes the basic training of health inspectors and the running of specialist and refresher courses for health inspectors.
Air Pollution—The air pollution provisions of Part V of the Health Act have been enforced since 1958. The chief chemical inspector is resident in Wellington. He has deputies in Auckland and Christchurch.
There are 26 classes of process requiring registration and they include the control of odours, and the supervision of rendering processes. Most registrable processes are governed by the requirement to adopt the best practicable means to control noxious discharges and emissions, but there are limiting standards for lead and acid gases. All new installations or extensions of these registrable processes require approval by the Department of Health.
There are some 240 works registered and regularly inspected by air pollution control officers. Industries not registered are the responsibility of local authorities. New industrial plant being established in New Zealand is required to meet standards as rigorous as any in the world for industrial sources of air pollution.
The air pollution committee of the Board of Health surveyed, in 1969, the air pollution problems of New Zealand and, in August 1970, published its report.
The Smoke Restriction Regulations 1964 were enacted with a view to giving local authorities stricter control of industrial smoke emissions.
Cemeteries—The law governing burial and cremation in New Zealand is found in the Burial and Cremation Act 1964. The registration by local authorities of funeral directors and mortuaries operated by them is provided for in the Health (Burial) Regulations 1946. Local authorities are charged with ensuring that adequate provision exists for the disposal of the dead.
Cremation may be carried out if the deceased is not known to have left any written direction to the contrary. Crematoria have been established in Auckland (two), Wellington, Christchurch (two), Dunedin, Hastings, Wanganui, Nelson, Palmerston North, Hamilton, New Plymouth, Rotorua, Tauranga, and Timaru.
DRUGS—The definitions of “drug” in the Food and Drug Act 1969 establish groups to which differing provisions apply. Therapeutic drugs, that is those substances or mixtures whether used internally or externally for the diagnosis, prevention, or treatment of any illness or injury of the human body or for modifying physiological process or desires or emotions, and chemical contraceptives are required, before being introduced commercially, to be “acceptable”, according to a procedure under the Food and Drug Act. No new therapeutic drug may be distributed in New Zealand without the consent of the Minister of Health, under sections 12 and 14 of the Act.
This Act also requires that any drug which has been changed in any way, in use, strength, or labelling must not be distributed until 90 days after notice of the change has been given to the Director-General of Health. He may consent to earlier distribution of a changed drug if he is satisfied on the drug's safety, or he may refer the facts to the Minister, in which case the drug cannot be marketed until the Minister's specific consent has been notified in the Gazette. A new therapeutic drug is also restricted to sale from pharmacies only, unless special authority is given for general distribution in a schedule to the Therapeutic Drugs (permitted sales) Regulations 1970. Drugs already on the market prior to 1 April 1970 are exempted from this provision until 31 March 1973.
A cosmetic, dentifrice, detergent, disinfectant, or antiseptic does not have to be “cleared” for marketing unless claims in labelling or advertising bring it within the definition of a “therapeutic drug”.
As in the case of food, the Food and Drug Act 1969 provides for the analysis, by analysts appointed under the Act, of any drug, which may be sold, offered for sale, or exposed for sale, and for the inspection of any place where there is any drug intended for sale. Measures provide for the prevention of adulteration and for the inspection of places where drugs are manufactured or packed. The Act controls all kinds of publicity concerning any drug whereby a purchaser would possibly be deceived in regard to its properties. Control over medical advertisements, and particularly the restraint of claims to cure or treat ailments listed in a statutory schedule is also incorporated in this legislation.
Under the Poisons Act 1960 and the Poisons Regulations 1964, certain drugs may not be sold to the public except on the prescription of a doctor, a dentist, or a veterinary surgeon. This legislation also requires specific warning statements to be included in the labelling of certain drugs such as the antihistamines, aspirin, phenacetin, and paracetamol.
NARCOTICS—Under the Narcotics Act 1965, and the Narcotics Regulations 1966, the Director-General of Health is the competent authority for the purpose of the international conventions and for the oversight of the legitimate distribution and use of narcotics within the country. Written approval of the Minister of Health is required for the import or export of cannabis, desomorphine, heroin, and ketobemidone, including their salts, and preparations containing them. The import, export, cultivation, production, possession, distribution, supply, and administration of narcotics is strictly controlled. Balanced quantitative records of transactions and stock are generally required to be kept. There is an extensive system of notification to Medical Officers of Health of narcotics supplied and a system of control of habituated persons.
FOOD AND NUTRITION—The Food and Drug Act 1969 provides for the analysis, by analysts appointed under the Act, of any articles of food or drink which may be sold, offered for sale, or exposed for sale, and for the inspection of any place where there is any food intended for sale. Stringent measures are provided for the prevention of adulteration and for the inspection of places where food is manufactured or packed. Regulations lay down minimum standards for many classes of food, control additives of all kinds, and deal coming into contact with food. Regular sampling of foods is undertaken by departmental inspectors and the samples are analysed in the Chemistry Division (DSIR) or its branch laboratories.
An important provision of the Act controls all kinds of publicity concerning any food whereby a purchaser would possibly be deceived in regard to the properties of such food, whether or not it is standardised by regulations.
The nutrition section of the Department of Health provides advisory services on nutrition and dietetics to dietary departments of hospitals, and food service departments of welfare and other institutions. It is responsible for nutrition education programmes and provides a nutrition information service for Government departments, organisations concerned with production and marketing of food, and the public. The section also carries out dietary research projects, generally in liaison with medical research teams concerned with nutrition research.
OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND TOXICOLOGY—The objective of the occupational health programme is to work with labour, management, the medical profession, and other groups to assist in improving the health of the worker.
The Department of Labour, which is responsible for accident prevention, hours of work, employment of women and children, etc., calls to the attention of the Department of Health any health problems which the factory inspectors may encounter. The Factories Act 1946 gives to medical officers of health or other authorised officers of the Department of Health the same powers and authorities as inspectors of factories with regard to the health and welfare sections of the Act. The suspension of workers on health grounds, approval of respirators and similar protective equipment, and the arrangements for medical examinations are undertaken by the Department of Health. A series of regulations deal with health hazards, many of them being administered by the two Departments, each in its own sphere.
A similar understanding has been established with the Waterfront Industry Commission and New Zealand Railways, and illustrates the general pattern of arrangements between the Department of Health and other Government Departments or agencies concerned with particular aspects of workers' health. An occupational health laboratory was established at Wellington in 1964.
Occupational Disease—The notifiable occupational diseases are scheduled in the Health Act 1956 and details of diseases notified are published annually in the report of the Director-General of Health.
Commercial, household, and agricultural poisons—The advertising, distribution, use, labelling, and packing of all poisons and toxic substances is controlled under the Poisons Act 1960 and the Poisons Regulations 1964. A manufacturer or importer must notify the Registrar of Poisons before importing or putting on the market any new substance which might be toxic, be it a chemical, household preparation, cosmetic, or drug. Special safeguards are provided for certain hazardous chemicals used in agriculture or horticulture. It is an offence to pack poisons in bottles that are ordinarily used for food, drink, or medicine. Labels for “Restricted Poisons” must bear statements of the precautions to be taken in use, the symptoms of poisoning and the remedial treatment, and must be approved by the Registrar of Poisons.
Control of Health Hazards—An increasing number of specific health hazards are coming under formal control, namely lead processes, electroplating, spray painting, sand blasting (siliceous blasting agents in factories are prohibited), fumigation, aerial application of poisons, where in conjunction with the Civil Aviation Division of Ministry of Transport a special rating is required by pilots, and agricultural chemicals. The organisation of radiation protection is dealt with by the National Radiation Laboratory, while a number of other specific hazards are currently receiving consideration.
Medical, Nursing, and First-aid Services—Minimal first-aid requirements have been laid down by the Department, which generally endeavours to encourage both the development of medical and nursing services and the raising of first-aid standards throughout industry generally. While there are no statutory obligations on industry to provide medical and nursing services, an increasing number of factories do provide such services. To meet the needs of small plants the Department has developed and is developing industrial health centres with financial support from the Waterfront Industry Commission in the case of harbour areas, and the
Pre-employment Examinations—Pre-employment medical examinations are required for young workers before entering factory employment.
CHILD HEALTH—The Health Department is responsible for the supervision of all measures for safeguarding the health of preschool and school children, and also for ensuring a satisfactory environment at school.
These services are under the direction of the Assistant Director of the Public Health Division, who is a medical practitioner, with a staff of full-time and part-time medical officers. The medical officer of health in charge of a health district is responsible, within the limits of the policy laid down and the instructions he receives, for the direction and control of all child health work in his district.
An effort is being made to have every child examined in infancy and before school entry. The examination of preschool children is carried out by medical officers of the division in Plunket rooms in conjunction with Plunket nurses, and at kindergartens, day nurseries, and other preschool centres assisted by public health nurses.
In keeping with modern thought, routine examinations by medical and nursing staff of specific age groups (except the testing of vision and hearing) has been replaced by continuous supervision of all children at school with examination when necessary. This supervision is effected largely by means of consultations between parents, teachers, nurses, and medical staff. These consultations are based on preschool records, questionnaires, and regular visits to the school by medical and nursing staff. The children found to be suffering from defects are kept under observation until the necessary treatment is obtained from the private practitioner or the hospital.
Mentally backward children are given special attention, arrangements being made in conjunction with the Department of Education for their entry into a special school or other institution as may be necessary. In addition, physically handicapped children enrolled with the Correspondence School are examined. A consultative service is available for secondary school children.
Throughout the work in this field, officers try to secure the interest and co-operation of parents and family doctors, because only in this way can the work be made effective. With this object in view it is considered important that parents be present at the medical examination of their children, an opportunity of which the majority take advantage.
Prevention of Disease—The activities in this field of child health are not confined to the routine medical examination of school children. In addition, certain positive measures are taken to prevent disease and correct physical defects. The more important of these measures are:
Immunisation Programme for Children—The protection of four doses of the oral vaccine for poliomyelitis is available to all infants and to all new settlers who have not received it in their countries of origin. Vaccination is available through general practitioners and departmental clinics. Protection against diphtheria, whooping cough, and tetanus is a routine procedure and a triple vaccine is used. It is preferable that immunisation be done by the family doctor, and the course of injections should be commenced as soon as possible after babies are three months old. Arrangements can be made for mothers who are unable to have the immunisation done privately to attend with the infant at a departmental clinic. If necessary in country areas the public health nurse will visit the home to immunise the child. Booster doses (against diphtheria and tetanus) are given at 18 months and after the child's fourth birthday or as soon as possible after the child commences school. Further booster doses (against tetanus only) are recommended at 10-yearly intervals and on injury. Measles vaccination is available from family doctors for infants from 10 months of age onwards. Rubella vaccination is available for pre-school children For girls and women prior consultation with a medical practitioner is essential.
Health Education—Officers are available to advise individuals and for lectures and discussions on aspects of family and community health for school and community groups.
Health Camps are established for the short-stay residential placement of children with special health problems. There are six permanent health camps in New Zealand maintained by the King George the Fifth Memorial Children's Health Camps Federation. They were originally established to cater for the needs of delicate and under-nourished children and now admit children who are convalescent after illness, those whose health is generally unsatisfactory, and also those suffering from minor emotional and behaviour disorders. Medical officers select the children to attend and exercise general health supervision of the camps In the relaxed but ordered routine of camp life with a satisfactory diet and a balance of activity, rest, and sleep, children benefit from this placement. Remedial teaching is provided by the Department of Education in the schools attached to the camps.
(d) Child Health Clinics—Child health clinics have been established in the larger centres and elsewhere for children with emotional or psychological disturbances and behaviour problems. These are staffed by a team consisting of a pediatrician, psychiatrist, psychologist, play therapist, and social worker. Children are referred to these clinics through the family doctor.
MATERNAL WELFARE—Maternal welfare is the responsibility of an Assistant Director in the Public Health Division. Maternal and infant welfare work in New Zealand is based on co-operation between the Department of Health, hospital boards, the medical and nursing professions, and the Royal New Zealand Society for the Health of Women and Children (Plunket Society).
The Assistant Director is a medical practitioner who, while not concerned with the particulars of day-to-day administration of maternity hospitals, is responsible for maternal welfare generally in its broadest sense. She keeps abreast of overseas and local developments and is regarded as a consultant on matters of national significance. For instance, in the event of an outbreak of infection affecting mothers or infants, she conducts and directs any necessary investigations as to causes and remedial measures required, in consultation with such other divisions as may be necessary.
The Assistant Director has the benefit of the advice of the Maternity Services Committee of the Board of Health, of which she is a member. This committee was formed to advise the Minister on matters relating to obstetric and maternal welfare generally.
The medical officers of health, through their staff of nurse inspectors, exercise a general supervision over the work of midwives and closely control the private hospitals throughout the country. All private hospitals are required to be licensed under the Hospitals Act 1957, and the Department of Health sees that standards regarding buildings, equipment, and staff are observed.
Except in an emergency, no persons other than registered medical practitioners and registered midwives are allowed to conduct confinements, and only registered midwives and registered maternity nurses are permitted to nurse women in childbirth. Approximately 99 percent of all confinements take place in the various types of maternity hospitals—a maternity annex to a public hospital, or a private maternity hospital.
Important contributions to maternal welfare are made by the Division of Nursing, which includes in its duties the supervision of the training of midwives and maternity nurses, and by the Hospitals Division, which approves plans for accommodation to be provided by the various types of maternity hospital. The work of these two Divisions is surveyed elsewhere in this section.
A review of the history and development of maternal and child health services in New Zealand is appended to the 1969 annual report of the Director-General of Health (parliamentary paper H.31).
HEALTH EDUCATION—The aim is to work with the public and to encourage action that will improve personal, family, and community health. The Health Education Branch is under the control of an Assistant Director, Division of Public Health, who is a medical practitioner with training in health education, a small staff of writers, technicians, and clerks at Head Office, and lay health education officers who are seconded to district offices and are responsible to the Assistant Director through their medical officers of health.
Medical and dental officers, public health nurses, dental nurses, and inspectors of health all devote some of their time to health education. The health education officer acts as a. coordinator and stimulates and extends health teaching and health programmes in the district. All the health education officers are women and several hold the diploma in health education issued by the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health. All are given special training before taking up their appointments. Various media are used to make the teaching as attractive, as direct, and as acceptable as possible. Daily newspapers and national periodicals carry regular advertisements on health subjects. Radio broadcasts are given at least twice a week and leaflets, pamphlets, and posters are available on many health topics.
The Division also publishes the Department's official bulletin Health which has a circulation of over 75,000 and is issued free to the public four times a year. It gives health information and publishes various aspects of the Department's work.
To assist field officers in their education work, visual aids, displays, and other publicity material is provided and in addition district offices arc encouraged to produce their own.
Voluntary organisations, too, are assisted in their work by the supply of teaching aids and other materials and by assistance with their training programmes.
Each district office has a health education committee consisting of senior administrative and professional officers which plans and budgets local health programmes. A central committee at Head Office largely plans and budgets for overall national requirements.
DENTAL HEALTH—The Division of Dental Health, which was instituted in 1921, is concerned with the administration of the various dental activities of the Government, and in particular—(a) The National Dental Service, which comprises (i) the School Dental Service and (ii) the Adolescent Dental Service; (b) the Social Security (Dental Benefits) Regulations; (c) the Dental Act 1963 and regulations; (d) dental bursaries; (e) dental research; (f) dental health education; (g) the Dental Technicians Regulations 1968 under the Medical and Dental Auxiliaries Act 1966.
The Division of Dental Health has at its head a Director (a dental surgeon), and there is also a Deputy Director, two Assistant Directors, and a dental research officer. The service is organised in 16 units, each of which is controlled by a senior dental officer, who is directly responsible to the Director. These officers are: the principals of the schools for dental nurses at Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch, and the principal dental officers in charge of the 13 dental districts into which New Zealand is divided.
The School Dental Service staffed by 1,341 trained school dental nurses provided systematic treatment for 582,964 pre-school and primary school children in the year ended 31 March 1969. A further 151,632 children under 16 years of age received regular treatment from private dentists under the Social Security (Dental Benefits) Scheme, and from a limited number of salaried dental officers.
The School Dental Service—Briefly, the functions of the service are to improve the standard of dental health of school children (and of preschool children) by affording them regular and systematic treatment at six-monthly intervals, commencing from the primer classes (or earlier when possible), and continuing through to the highest class of the primary (or intermediate) school. Thereafter they are eligible for enrolment in the Adolescent Service.
Two years are devoted to the theoretical and practical training of school dental nurses. Approximately 500 student dental nurses can be trained at the one time. The course is carefully graduated and is in the hands of a staff of dental surgeons and dental tutor sisters. Private dental practitioners are represented on the examining boards for the final examination. During the period of training, student dental nurses reside in hostels owned and controlled by the Department of Health.
On completing her training, a school dental nurse is posted to a school dental clinic, where she becomes responsible to the principal dental officer of her district for the dental treatment of a group of approximately 500 patients. She is visited at regular intervals by the principal dental officer and by a dental nurse inspector who assist the dental nurse to maintain a high standard of performance in all aspects of work.
Dental treatment comprises fillings in both temporary teeth and permanent teeth, cleaning and scaling of the teeth, extractions when necessary, and sodium fluoride treatment. The aim of the service is to promote dental health by conserving the natural teeth and preventing dental decay. Only a small number of teeth have to be extracted as unsavable, slightly less than three for every 100 saved by conservative treatment.
Adolescent Dental Service—Dental care for adolescents is provided by private practitioners as a dental benefit under the Social Security Act, the practitioners being reimbursed on a fee-for-service basis.
Eligibility for dental treatment as an adolescent is contingent upon a person's having undergone regular dental care up to within three months of the time of application, either at a school dental clinic or from a private dental practitioner.
Treatment of adolescents, which has been available since 1946, is in effect a continuation of the treatment provided by the School Dental Service, and is continued until a patient has reached his sixteenth birthday.
Treatment is essentially of a nature designed to conserve the natural teeth. Dental supervision of adolescents is on a basis of examination and treatment at six-monthly intervals. There is free choice of dentists, and dentists have the right to decline patients.
The treatment (other than treatment requiring special approval) which may be provided as dental benefits, and the fees payable, are indicated in the Schedule to the Social Security (Dental Benefits) Regulations 1960. Dentists are free to exercise their professional judgment, and, if in their opinion a case demands a form of treatment that is not provided for in the Schedule, there is provision, with certain limitations, for such treatment to be approved as a charge on social security funds.
Dental Health Education—The dental health education activities of the Department include the production of posters, pamphlets, sound films, filmstrips, radio talks, newspaper advertisements, and all other types of advertising media.
Officers of the service are kept in touch with health education and other matters by means of the School Dental Service Gazette, which is published bi-monthly.
Dental officers and school dental nurses are expected to impress on their patients the necessity of maintaining a high standard of oral health. To further this end every opportunity is taken of distributing health educational literature, displaying posters, and devoting reasonable clinical time to instruction in oral hygiene. Opportunities to address meetings of various kinds are availed of whenever possible.
Dental Research—Dental research is directed by the Dental Research Committee of the Medical Research Council. The staff consisting of a director, three professional assistants, and three associated workers are primarily engaged in a long-term programme of research in dental problems.
In addition, a dental research officer is employed by the Department to undertake investigations of operational methods, materials, and equipment, etc., which have a direct bearing on the efficiency and effectiveness of the Division's programme.
Dental Bursaries—The Government grants bursaries each year to selected students to assist them to qualify as dentists. The bursaries are the equivalent of the bursary that would be payable under the University Bursary Regulations plus $200 a year. Students who are granted bursaries must enter into an agreement to pursue their studies diligently and, on graduating, to enter the service of the Crown or of a hospital board appointed by the Crown for a specified period not exceeding three years.
Fluoridation—The Division of Dental Health actively supports the fluoridation of public water supplies. At the present time approximately two-thirds of all persons living in water-reticulated areas are drinking fluoridated water. The beneficial effects of this are already becoming evident. In towns which adopted this measure early the teeth of the children show a remarkable improvement and the need for dental treatment has become considerably less.
RADIATION PROTECTION—Under the Radioactive Substances Act 1949 the protection of the population from radiation hazards is a responsibility of the Department of Health. Within the Department the National Radiation Laboratory (formerly the Dominion X-ray and Radium Laboratory) provides the administrative and technical services required, and, in addition, the educational programme, without which effective co-operation in any safety field is not likely to be achieved. An important feature of the Act was the setting up of the Radiological Advisory Council on whose advice the Minister of Health may take action on radiation problems concerning the welfare of the people. Further legislation by way of regulations followed in 1951 and these include the Radiation Protection Regulations and the Transport of Radioactive Substances Regulations.
The National Radiation Laboratory is required to maintain the primary X-ray standard for New Zealand and also reference standards for the accurate measurement of radioactive substances used in clinical work. Control of radiation sources is effectively obtained by licensing operators at each place where ionising sources are used, and the Electrical (X-ray) Wiring Regulations 1944 provide for the compulsory registration of all X-ray plants in the country. The importation and use of radioactive materials is strictly controlled, and requests for such materials on overseas suppliers must be authorised by the laboratory, which acts as the procurement agency for most of the radio-isotopes required.
The laboratory operates a field service whereby trained physicists regularly visit all places where ionising sources are used. During these visits measurements are taken, protection problems discussed, and everything possible is done to ensure that persons associated with the ionising sources adopt safe working habits. Apart from the obvious groups, e.g., medical and dental users, the laboratory is also concerned with specialised equipment, such as mass X-ray units, X-ray apparatus used in schools, radar and television equipment, X-ray diffraction units, electron microscopes, research accelerators, etc. Good protection, of course, depends not only on careful working habits but also on material protection.
In recent years the Department of Health has undertaken responsibility for the monitoring of air, rainwater, and soil for the incidence of radioactive contamination from fall-out.
PHYSICAL MEDICINE—Physical medicine is concerned with potentially disabling conditions such as rheumatic diseases, cerebral palsy, and other disorders of the locomotor system. Within the Department physical medicine is the responsibility of an Assistant Director of the Hospitals Division who is also responsible for the general organisation and development of physiotherapy and occupational therapy services throughout the country.
The centre for the treatment of rheumatism is established at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Rotorua which has approximately 100 beds set aside for diagnosis, research, and treatment of these diseases. Full physiotherapy and occupational therapy facilities are provided and active steps towards rehabilitation of patients are carried out. A large number of outpatients referred from all parts of New Zealand and a few from overseas are seen every year.
Admission of patients to the hospital is arranged with the Medical Superintendent, who also arranges for outpatient consultations. Physiotherapists and occupational therapists work together in preventing and controlling deformity, and teaching people how to live with their disabilities. Social workers assist in bridging the gap between rehabilitation and vocational and social resettlement.
A cerebral palsy unit is also situated at Queen Elizabeth Hospital providing residential accommodation for 20 children. At this unit the activities of a team of physiotherapists, occupational therapists, teachers, and speech therapists are co-ordinated by the supervisor of the unit working under a physician. In addition to treatment, post-graduate courses are given to physiotherapists, occupational therapists, teachers, and speech therapists. Patients can be referred by their doctors to the physician in charge of the unit for advice only, or for admission and treatment. Cerebral palsy visiting therapist services are now operating in certain health districts.
Cerebral palsy day schools have been established in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin, and Invercargill. Parents of cerebral palsy cases who seek their children's admission first apply to the appropriate medical officer of health or education board. The schools are administered by education boards under the Department of Education, but close liaison exists between the schools, the Rotorua unit, and the visiting cerebral palsy therapists.
REHABILITATION OF DISABLED CIVILIANS—The rehabilitation of disabled and handicapped civilians has received increasing emphasis over recent years in New Zealand. Basically, public hospitals are the hub for development of an adequate medical rehabilitation service, with co-operation from Government and voluntary agencies in furthering the medical, social, and vocational welfare of the disabled.
A Civilian Rehabilitation Centre is established at Otara, under the Auckland Hospital Board's administration, for the treatment and overall restoration of those injured in employment or road accidents. For the rehabilitation of persons suffering from spinal injuries and paraplegia, specialist spinal injury centres are in course of development at Auckland and Christchurch. Rehabilitation activities are also being carried out at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, the Palmerston North Hospital, and in many of the psychiatric and psychopaedic hospitals of the Mental Hospitals Division.
On 1 April 1969 the Disabled Servicemen's Re-establishment League altered its name to the Disabled Re-establishment League and became the principal agent of Government in the field of rehabilitation. The main function of the newly constituted League is to provide facilities for work assessment and work experience for the disabled. Policy is decided by a central Board of Management and District Committees administer the centres which are established in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin, Napier, and Invercargill.
A National Civilian Rehabilitation Committee, comprising representatives from the Departments of Labour, Social Security, and Health, advise Government on steps to co-ordinate and promote rehabilitation in New Zealand.
NURSING SERVICES—The Division of Nursing of the Department of Health is responsible for the organisation and control of nursing service to the public in general, in hospitals (departmental, public or private); in homes for the aged, incapacitated, or infirm; or in any other places where the Department of Health has statutory responsibility. Considerable delegation has taken place mainly to hospital boards whose chief nursing officer is responsible to the chief medical officer for the day to day administration of the services provided. The Division of Nursing advises, reviews, and reports on nursing services in public and departmental hospitals, district nursing services, and public health nursing services for the purpose of ensuring the most efficient and economical use of public moneys and to determine that legislation is complied with in these fields.
Nursing education is provided in 58 schools of nursing in New Zealand (56 operated by hospital boards and 2 by private hospital organisations). As at 31 March 1970 there were 7,243 students undertaking basic nursing programmes. The Department of Health organises and controls the School of Advanced Nursing Studies.
MEDICAL STATISTICS—The National Health Statistics Centre is responsible for the compilation of the statistics included in the Annual Report on the Medical Statistics of New Zealand. The Centre also prepares special statistics for the various Divisions of the Department and for research workers in different fields both in New Zealand and overseas. A constant liaison is maintained with the World Health Organisation, which is supplied with statistical material giving a picture of health trends in New Zealand. In addition, from time to time special statistical investigations are made into important aspects of public health and diseases that warrant specific study.
NATIONAL HEALTH INSTITUTE—Opened in 1954, the National Health Institute is the Department of Health's centre for the study of public health problems. It contains an Epidemiology Section and Public Health Laboratories.
The Epidemiology Section conducts field research into matters of public health interest. It is also responsible for the organisation of examinations for medical laboratory technicians.
The Public Health Laboratories provide diagnostic and reference services in bacteriology and virology for medical officers of health and hospital laboratories as well as for the other sections of the institute. The institute is the national centre for those reference services which are organised on an international basis.
MEDICAL RESEARCH COUNCIL—Under the Medical Research Council Act 1950, as amended, the Medical Research Council of New Zealand was established as a corporate body with the following functions:
To initiate, foster, and support medical research;
To furnish information, advice, and assistance to persons and organisations concerned with medical research;
To collect and disseminate scientific information, including the publication of reports.
This Council took over and developed the work of the departmental committee, bearing the same name, which had been in existence since 1938. At the end of 1969 research in the following fields was in progress; dentistry; experimental endocrinology and metabolism; human genetics; hydatids; Island Territories research; toxicology; virus; electron microscopy; biochemistry of fat metabolism; body fluids and renal physiology; cardiovascular epidemiology; cell injury; cellular immunity; clinical and experimental studies on hypertension; clinical studies of autoimmune disease; connective tissue cytology; dental tissue trauma; electrolyte and acid-base metabolism; experimental cardiac surgery; experimental studies of autoimmune disease; fat metabolism in coronary disease; foetal and neonatal health; general practice and medical care; kidney disease and transplantation; luteal activity and pregnancy; metabolism in diabetics and obesity; microbiological studies; molecular biology of bacterial viruses; pancreatitis and amino acid metabolism; research into growth and metabolism; steroids and metabolism; synthesis of enzymes; the structure of dental enamel; tumor virology; vascular and general surgical studies; anaemia in the Maori; eclampsia in New Zealand; Maori maternal and infant health.
The Council maintains liaison with the research work being carried out by the Cancer Society of New Zealand and medical research foundations established in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Palmerston North, Hawke's Bay, Otago, and Southland.
The Council administers the Medical Research Endowment Fund, from which an annual expenditure of $1.2 million is incurred in supporting research projects at the University of Otago, the University of Auckland, the Massey University and the institutions of the Auckland, Wellington, North Canterbury, Palmerston North and Otago Hospital Boards.
The Council employs a staff of about 80 full-time workers, and some 80 associated workers contribute to the activities of the Council. A further 70 workers are employed by the University of Otago and the University of Auckland under project grants from the Council.
The Council awards scholarships and fellowships to selected graduates and undergraduates who wish to engage in medical research.
The Council is empowered to receive bequests and donations to the fund for furthering the objects of the Council as set out in the Medical Research Council Act 1950.
MEDICAL COUNCIL—The Medical Council of New 2:ealand, constituted under the Medical Practitioners Act 1968, consists of the Director-General of Health, the Deans of the Faculties of Medicine in the Universities of Otago and Auckland and eight registered medical practitioners appointed on a representative basis.
The Council deals with all applications for registration under the Act. The Council may require the holder of a foreign diploma to attend a course and pass an examination in medicine and surgery. Until an applicant is able to satisfy the Council that he has obtained house officer experience, in a resident medical capacity, of not less than 12 months or has otherwise obtained comparable experience, registration is on a conditional basis. Persons registered conditionally may practise only in an approved hospital. A Medical Education Committee responsible to the Council exercises general supervision over the training of persons conditionally registered. The number of medical practitioners on the register at 30 June 1969 was 4,435.
The Medical Council is vested with certain disciplinary powers. Right of appeal to the Supreme Court is provided.
DOCTORS IN ACTIVE PRACTICE—A report made in 1970 by the Joint Committee on Medical Graduate Needs assessed that in 1968 the doctors in active practice in New Zealand totalled 3,182 and that they were engaged as follows:
†Non-specialist psychiatrist medical officers.
‡Includes preventive and social medicine and medically qualified teachers in non-clinical subjects.
§Hospital boards, armed services, student health, trainees and industry Government (other than Department of Health), family planning association, research, etc.