New Zealand Parliament Buildings, Wellington, New Zealand.
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Editor’s Note: Here below is a list of the main issues currently under discussion in New Zealand and links to media coverage.

Today’s content

Housing
Jenée Tibshraeny (Interest): Greens say house prices need to fall
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Green Party will continue to push for wealth tax, blast Govt for ‘not doing enough’ about housing crisis
Anna Whyte (1News): ‘Government is not doing enough’ – Greens, National call for action amid soaring public housing need, high house prices
Mike Hosking (Newstalk ZB): Govt can’t, and won’t, do anything about the housing market
Jason Walls (Herald): Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern promises to fix what she says is New Zealand’s ‘housing crisis’
Craig McCulloch (RNZ): Public housing tops agenda at Labour MPs’ retreat
1News: Four-year public housing plan announced by Government, with North Island locations the ‘particular focus’
Brent Melville (BusinessDesk): Housing dominates Labour’s first meeting of 2021
Michael Neilson (Herald): New Zealand’s public housing crisis: Waiting list grows nearly 1000 in two months
RNZ: Youth homeless collective calls on government to provide better solutions for emergency housing
Damian George and Peter McKenzie (Stuff): Aspiring landlord says more people should set up container homes for rent in their backyards
Melissa Nightingale (Herald): Wellington shipping container ‘home’ for $390 not approved, council says
Ashley Church (One Roof): My six predictions for the housing market in 2021
David Hargreaves (Interest): Housing market’s ‘perfect storm’ and ‘unprecedented’ price gains
Marc Daalder (Newsroom): Housing affordability crisis by the numbers
Miriam Bell (Stuff): NZ’s property market has never been hotter: Trade Me
Luisa Girao (ODT): Rent rise would mean hardship: tenants

US politics and NZ; International relations
Georgia Forrester (Stuff): Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern congratulates President Joe Biden
Claire Trevett (Herald): Jacinda Ardern and Donald Trump, the end of the silent treatment (paywalled)
Liam Dann (Herald): What will a Joe Biden presidency mean for NZ? (paywalled)
Fran O’Sullivan (Herald): Chris Liddell confirms he’s pulled out of running for OECD Secretary-General role
Herald: Chris Liddell pulls out of running for OECD Secretary-General role
John Weekes (Herald): Joe Biden Inauguration: New Zealand DIA deploys online counter-terror team
Chris Keall (Herald): Twitter – The secret policeman (paywalled)
Jamie Ensor (Newshub): Xinjiang: NZ urged to follow Trump administration’s lead declaring ‘genocide’ in China against Uighurs

Covid
RNZ: Epidemiologist Michael Baker calls for stronger pre-departure rules for travellers
Cate Broughton (Stuff): MIQ staffer quit just months into job because she didn’t feel safe from Covid
Charles Anderson (The Guardian): Covid unlikely to die out, says New Zealand health chief Ashley Bloomfield
1News: Finding enough staff to administer the Covid-19 jab could be a challenge in NZ
Martyn Bradbury (The Daily Blog): Why Labour must urgently gain vaccines for frontline workers before March
Herald: Covid 19 coronavirus: Ashley Bloomfield – vaccine approval just weeks away
RNZ: Covid vaccine: How the Government can convince the quarter of Kiwis who don’t want one
Jake Kenny (Stuff): Use both QR codes and Bluetooth tracing, health officials say
Keith Lynch (Stuff): Covid-19: How likely you are to die from the virus, according to the latest research

Economy, inequality and work
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): Smelter deal – save some outrage, there may be something we’re not being told
Sally Murphy (RNZ): ‘Call back in 2022’: Shortage of tradespeople compounds with building boom
Herald: Editorial: New Zealand’s surprising economy should not be taken for granted (paywalled)
Brent Edwards (NBR): Businesses rebounding from Covid downturn, survey confirms (paywalled)
Jamie Gray (Herald): Economist says Reserve Bank could be the first to start raising rates (paywalled)
Rebecca Howard (BusinessDesk): NZ could be the first to lift interest rates (paywalled)
Alison Brook (Interest): Is technology killing off inflation?
Tamsyn Parker (Herald): The major KiwiSaver shake-up set to happen in 2021 (paywalled)
RNZ: The $6b hole left by lack of international travellers. The regions doing well, and the ones which are suffering
Dita De Boni (NBR): Plan B required as domestic tourism fails to soar (paywalled)

Parliament and Government
John Bishop (Stuff): Why is Jacinda Ardern so timid?
Jason Walls (Herald): The rise and charm of Kieran McAnulty – who is the Labour Party’s new Chief Whip? (paywalled)
David Farrar (Kiwiblog): Has NZ electoral reform been bipartisan?

Cannabis policing decision
Sam Sherwood (Stuff): National brands decision not to inform police minister or staff about cannabis cull ‘unacceptable
Heather du Plessis-Allan (Newstalk ZB): Police right to cancel their cannabis flights
Anna Whyte (1News): National demands answers after police drop annual operation to find cannabis grows
Russell Brown (The Spinoff): Why we should cheer the grounding of the annual helicopter cannabis hunt
Peter de Graaf (Herald) Police: No more NZ-wide aerial cannabis blitzes (paywalled)
Chris Fowlie (Daily Blog): Rejoice fellow citizens, your skies will no longer be darkened by military and police surveilling your herb gardens

Cannabis referendum media coverage survey
Mike Hosking (Newstalk ZB): Media bias exposed in cannabis referendum coverage
Kate Hawkesby (Newstalk ZB): I’m not surprised analysis shows media bias for the cannabis referendum
Bob McCoskrie: Significant media bias during cannabis referendum – analysis

Local government
Tom Hunt (Stuff): Cease-and-desist issued to Shelly Bay occupiers in Wellington
RNZ: Iwi protesting Shelly Bay sale serve developer with trespass notice
Charlotte Jones (Herald): Ōpōtiki councillor to complain to Race Relations Commissioner over Grey Power newsletter

Climate and environment
Marc Daalder (Newsroom): Climate Commission: NZ on track to miss methane targets
Jonathan Milne (Newsroom): Bus deadline an electrifying shock to climate ambitions
Stephen Forbes (Stuff): Auckland Transport unveils fleet of electric buses for new AirportLink service

Other
Stuff: Courts made ‘something of a hash’ of charities definition – senior judge
Henry Cooke (Stuff): Health minister ‘concerned’ as mental health annual reports are two years behind normal schedule
Esther Ashby-Coventry (Stuff): Junior doctors get immersed in Māori culture
Linda Mitchell (Herald): Early childhood education should be a public service (paywalled)
Stewart Forsyth (Herald): We need more women leaders (paywalled)
RNZ: Young people escaping from Oranga Tamariki homes sign of ‘unmet needs’
Tayyaba Khan (Newsroom): The terror attack was on all of us; the solutions must involve everyone
Jade Temepara (Stuff): How kaitiakitanga can guide us in our approach to the modern world
Josie Adams (The Spinoff): On the tools: Why music producers are the focus of a new funding scheme
Newstalk ZB: Robertson denies PM is on holiday until Waitangi Day

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