New Zealand 2014
New Zealand. An earthquake of magnitude 6.3 on the Richter scale shook the North Island in New Zealand in January. The quake occurred just over 11 miles northeast of the capital Wellington at a depth of 2.7 miles, according to the US Federal Geological Survey, USGS. Several buildings were damaged in the quake, but no people were injured.
According to Countryaah.com, New Zealand population in 2020 is estimated at 4,822,244. Prime Minister John Key announced in March that elections would be held on September 20. He also wanted a referendum to decide to replace the country’s flag. Key considered that the flag, which has the British flag in one corner of the New Zealand, is outdated and reminiscent of the country’s colonial past.
An opinion poll, commissioned by Reuters, showed in March that Keys Nationalist Party was leading before the center-left Labor. However, the Keys party lacked its own majority and would need the support of smaller parties to retain power.
Joy of joy broke out in many places in April when Parliament voted yes to a new law on same-sex marriage. Consequently, New Zealand became the 13th country in the world to accept same-sex marriage. The Catholic Church warned that the law would undermine the family. The new law is not mandatory for the church, and priests may refuse to wed gay couples if they feel it violates their faith.
New Zealand came out on top in this year’s welfare, which is published by the Europa Portal news site. The measure used in the comparison is called the Social Progress Index (SPI) and encompasses about 50 parameters, including living environment, education, security, housing, health, human rights and access to information.
An earthquake of magnitude 7.2 on the Richter scale was registered in June in the western Pacific Ocean, north of New Zealand. The earthquake took place at 5 kilometers deep beneath the seabed near the Kermadic Islands and 73 kilometers south-east of its largest island, Raoulön, which belongs to New Zealand. The area is one of the world’s most seismically active.
After 200 years of European presence, New Zealand had thought clearly about what the country’s two main islands should be called. The North and South Islands are proposed to be given the names Nordön and Sydön in English. In the original Maori language, the names become more poetic – Te Ika-a-Maui (“Maui’s fish”) and Te Waipounamu (“Green stone rivers”), respectively.
During the summer, the book “Dirty Politics” caused rebellions. The book, written by a freelance journalist, contains e-mails taken during a data breach by one of the right-wing bloggers. In the book, the government is accused of being involved in throwing campaigns against various opponents. Among other things, Justice Minister Judith Collins is accused of having been involved in trying to reach the supreme head of the state government investigating corruption. She chose to retire in August.
At the September 22 parliamentary elections, it was clear that Prime Minister John Key and his Conservative Nationalist Party had to reign. The party, which has ruled New Zealand since 2008, received 48.1% of the vote, while the center-left Labor got 24.6% of the vote. During the election campaign, Key announced that his government was planning to sell out state-owned companies to raise money for the Treasury. Labor leader Phil Goff resigned and was succeeded by David Shearer.
In connection with the election, a referendum was held on changing the election system. A majority of voters voted to keep the old system.
New Zealand, along with Spain, Angola, Malaysia and Venezuela, were elected as new non-permanent members of the UN Security Council. The countries would take office on 1 January 2015 and sit on the Council for two years.