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Post-Cabinet Press Conference on Cyclone Pam

Post-Cabinet Press Conference on Cyclone Pam

In a press conference held today in Wellington, Prime Minister John Key discussed New Zealand’s response to Cyclone Pam.

[Update - Transcript: PM's Post-Cabinet Press Conference Transcript: 16 March 2015]

The government announced today an increase in aid to Vanuatu from an initial $1 Million to $2.5 Million.

Following the eight tonne supply drop sent on the 15th March, two more NZDF relief flights have departed for the disaster-struck Island today.

On Saturday the NZDF conducted damage assessments flights over Tuvalu, the first nation in Cyclone Pam’s path.

“We will continue to do all we can to help our Pacific neighbours,” said Key.

There have been no reports of any New Zealand casualties as a result of the Cyclone in New Zealand or the affected Pacific Islands.

The East Coast of New Zealand most affected by the cyclone. Civil and military personnel were despatched to the area in advance.

The Cyclone appears to be moving away from the North Island and heading towards the Chatham Islands. Key said that three civil defence personnel were despatched to the Chathams this morning.

With regard to the 1080 milk powder threats: The Prime Minister said that over 70 people have contacted the police with information, and the investigation is ongoing.

“MPI is continuing to work with NZ manufacturers and retailers in relation to further strengthen the supply chain security and to encourage consumer vigilance in checking for tampering with any products,” said Key.

Over 52,000 tests for 1080 have been completed to date and have all turned a negative result.

Key also commented on the Waitemata bridge proposal, stating that it accounted for a population growth in Auckland over the next 20 years and that the bridge would cost between $4-6 billion.

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