Coronavirus: Sir Peter Gluckman explains what New Zealand's four key focuses should be for the future

The Prime Minister's former Chief Science Advisor says now is the best time for people across the political spectrum to come together to find the best way forward for New Zealand post-pandemic.

In an interview on Rebuilding Paradise with Paul Henry on Thursday, Sir Peter Gluckman said Kiwis must adapt to change but past issues that haven't been dealt with must also be addressed.

Sir Peter said everyone's needs must be addressed and listened to. The first point he made was that in the future, New Zealand needed to address some of its long-lasting issues to move forward.

"If we don't have a common view of the path ahead we'll all go in different directions and we'll lose this opportunity that is so important."

Secondly, New Zealand must look after the wellbeing of all its people. Sir Peter said it was everyone's job to shape a post-pandemic future.

"The Government will be there for one or two political cycles then there'll be another one and as we know, change takes time."

He said the third area of focus should be the economy.

"We already know that we have to work out how to get more value out of our agricultural sector while reducing its environmental impact."

Finally, Sir Peter said New Zealand needs to grasp the opportunities ahead.

"We need to think so much more about what it takes to be an advanced economy and I think in doing that we can make enormous advantages.

"If we are safe not just in terms of being COVID-free but violence-free, with a strong commitment to environmentalism, we should attract major companies and people to think this is where they should insert their most valued assets."

Sir Peter Gluckman.
Sir Peter Gluckman. Photo credit: MediaWorks

Sir Peter's focus':

  • Address the issues of the past
  • Look after the wellbeing of all its people
  • The economy
  • Grasp the opportunities ahead