Chris Hipkins Swears In As New Prime Minister Of New Zealand

After the formal handover of the power, Jacinda Ardern left Parliament as prime minister for the final time this morning, heading to Government House to officially tender her resignation and shift to the back benches Chris Hipkins, 44, has been sworn in as the 41st Prime Minister of New Zealand on Wednesday, reported New Zealand’s public broadcaster RNZ. After the formal handover of the power, Jacinda Ardern left Parliament as prime minister for the final time this morning, heading to Government House to officially tender her resignation and shift to…

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China’s COVID situation is dire – but it shouldn’t pose a big risk to other countries, Health News, ET HealthWorld

New Delhi: China is currently in the midst of a severe wave of COVID infections and deaths. We don’t know exactly how bad it is because of significant gaps in official reporting, but by all indications, things are dire. News reports suggest hospitals and mortuaries are overflowing. So how did China get here, and how will the situation play out? Despite the popular perception that the current wave of infections is a direct result of the country lifting its zero COVID policy in early December, this isn’t quite true. Cases…

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From fly fishing to cycling — the new popular pastimes of the ultra-rich

For the ultra-rich, fly fishing is one of the most popular ways to spend time, a new report says. GROGL via Getty Images Spending time on yachts, golf courses and the slopes of exclusive ski resorts might be what first comes to mind when thinking about how the ultra-rich like to spend their time. And while those are all in the top ten pastimes of so-called centi-millionaires — anyone who has assets worth over $100 million – other activities on the list might be more surprising. Fishing and cycling are…

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Shanghai, Mumbai, Melbourne and beyond: CNBC names the best Asia-Pacific hotels for business travel

Business travelers are on the road again. So there’s no better time for CNBC Travel to name the best hotels for business travel across Asia-Pacific. CNBC joined with the market and consumer data firm Statista to produce rankings of the “Best Hotels for Business Travelers.” A second list of rankings for hotels in Europe and the Middle East will be published next month. In total, we analyzed more than 10,000 four- and five-star hotels in 117 locations to produce a list corporate travelers can trust. We did this using a…

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How do people in Asia-Pacific feel about travel right now? It depends on where they live

For the most part, residents of Asia-Pacific can travel again. But some are more confident about packing their bags than others. Travel confidence is “diverse and nuanced” in the region, according to a new survey commissioned by the travel website Booking.com. Some 11,000 people in the region were polled about their comfort levels and concerns, as well as their willingness to tolerate the types of disruptions that have become common since the pandemic began.  The rankings The survey results were published in Booking.com’s inaugural “Travel Confidence Index,” which ranked the…

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Bare-ly Travelled In Last 2 Years

Never ever has anyone seen a pandemic that will be so sufferable that it will trap the citizens within the four walls. But citizens can have a quest for travel again as most of the countries have resumed travel restrictions and some of the countries do not even need a visa for travel. By grabbing the Indian passport, citizens can now visit 60 countries across the globe without having a particular requirement for any specific visa. As per the Henley Passport Index 2022, India is positioned at 87th place, although…

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New Zealand had one of the world’s strictest Covid lockdowns. Now its borders are fully reopening

After more than two years, New Zealand is fully reopening its borders and welcoming back all international travelers. The country is reopening on July 31, some three months earlier than previously announced. Earlier this year, New Zealand’s borders were opened to Australians and citizens of 60 places that do not need visas to enter, including Singapore, the United States and the United Kingdom. In 2021, New Zealand had some of the world’s strictest pandemic restrictions, including lockdowns triggered by a single Covid case, extensive testing and numerous public health mandates.…

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Big Tech Cos Agree To Reduce Harmful Content Online In New Zealand

Big tech companies agreed on Monday to reduce harmful online content in New Zealand, making a move that critics said dodged the alternative of government regulation. Meta Platforms Inc, Alphabet-owned Google, TikTok, Amazon.com Inc and Twitter had signed a code of practice, said Netsafe, a government-funded internet-safety group. The companies would follow the code as self-regulation, Netsafe chief Brent Carey said in a statement. “There are too many Kiwis being bullied, harassed, and abused online, which is why the industry has rallied together to protect users”, Carey said in a…

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Scientists find microplastics in fresh Antarctic snow for first time

David Merron Photography | Moment | Getty Images Scientists have found microplastics in fresh snowfall in Antarctica for the first time, highlighting the extent of global plastic pollution as even the most remote regions experience contamination. Researchers from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand gathered samples of snow from 19 different sites in the Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica and discovered plastic particles in all of them, according to a report published this week in the journal Cryosphere. Most of the particles were from a type of plastic called polyethylene terephthalate, which…

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New Zealand reports 1st Omicron BA.5 variant – ET HealthWorld

Wellington, New Zealand reported its first case of Omicron BA.5 variant at the border, said the Ministry of Health in a statement on Sunday. A person who has travelled from South Africa to New Zealand has been confirmed as having the BA.5 variant of Omicron, reports Xinhua news agency. This is the first known detection of the variant in New Zealand. According to the Ministry, this follows the detection of BA.4 on May 1, also in a person who had travelled from South Africa. It can take weeks or months…

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