The Government of New Zealand

The Government of New Zealand

New Zealand Government

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: New Zealand abbreviation: NZ

Government type: parliamentary democracy and a Commonwealth realm

Capital: name: Wellington geographic coordinates: 41 28 S, 174 51 E time difference: UTC+12 (17 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time) daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in September; ends first Sunday in April note: New Zealand is divided into two time zones - New Zealand standard time (12 hours in advance of UTC), and Chatham Islands time (45 minutes in advance of New Zealand standard time)

Administrative divisions: 16 regions and 1 territory*; Auckland, Bay of Plenty, Canterbury, Chatham Islands*, Gisborne, Hawke's Bay, Manawatu-Wanganui, Marlborough, Nelson, Northland, Otago, Southland, Taranaki, Tasman, Waikato, Wellington, West Coast

Independence: 26 September 1907 (from the UK)

National holiday: Waitangi Day (Treaty of Waitangi established British sovereignty over New Zealand), 6 February (1840); ANZAC Day (commemorated as the anniversary of the landing of troops of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps during World War I at Gallipoli, Turkey), 25 April (1915)

Constitution: consists of a series of legal documents, including certain acts of the UK and New Zealand Parliaments, as well as The Constitution Act 1986, which is the principal formal charter; adopted 1 January 1987, effective 1 January 1987

Legal system: based on English law, with special land legislation and land courts for the Maori; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor General Anand SATYANAND (since 23 August 2006) head of government: Prime Minister John KEY (since 19 November 2008); Deputy Prime Minister Bill ENGLISH (since 19 November 2008) cabinet: Executive Council appointed by the governor general on the recommendation of the prime minister elections: the monarch is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of a majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the governor general; deputy prime minister appointed by the governor general

Legislative branch: unicameral House of Representatives - commonly called Parliament (usually 120 seats; 69 members elected by popular vote in single-member constituencies including 7 Maori constituencies, and 51 proportional seats chosen from party lists; serve three-year terms) elections: last held 8 November 2008 (next to be held not later than 27 November 2011) election results: percent of vote by party - NP 44.9%, NZLP 34%, Green Party 6.7%, NZ First 4%, ACT New Zealand 3.7%, Maori 2.4%, Progressive 0.9%, UF 0.9%, other 6.6%; seats by party - NP 58, NZLP 43, Green Party 9, ACT New Zealand 5, Maori 5, Progressive 1, UF 1 note: results of 2008 election saw the total number of seats increase to 122

Judicial branch: Supreme Court; Court of Appeal; High Court; note - judges appointed by the governor general

Political parties and leaders: ACT New Zealand [Rodney HIDE]; Green Party [Jeanette FITZSIMONS]; Maori Party [Tariana TURIA and Pita SHARPLES]; National Party or NP [John KEY]; New Zealand First Party or NZ First [Winston PETERS]; New Zealand Labor Party or NZLP [Phil GOFF]; Progressive Party [James (Jim) ANDERTON]; United Future or UF [Peter DUNNE]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Women's Electoral Lobby or WEL other: apartheid groups; civil rights groups; farmers groups; Maori; nuclear weapons groups; women's rights groups

International organization participation: ADB, ANZUS (US suspended security obligations to NZ on 11 August 1986), APEC, ARF, ASEAN (dialogue partner), Australia Group, BIS, C, CP, EAS, EBRD, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, NAM (guest), NSG, OECD, OPCW, PCA, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIS, UNMIT, UNTSO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Roy N. FERGUSON chancery: 37 Observatory Circle NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 328-4800 FAX: [1] (202) 667-5227 consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador William P. McCORMICK embassy: 29 Fitzherbert Terrace, Thorndon, Wellington mailing address: P. O. Box 1190, Wellington; PSC 467, Box 1, APO AP 96531-1034 telephone: [64] (4) 462-6000 FAX: [64] (4) 499-0490 consulate(s) general: Auckland

Flag description: blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant with four red five-pointed stars edged in white centered in the outer half of the flag; the stars represent the Southern Cross constellation

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