Revealed: Labour and NZ First's coalition agreement

Prime Minister-elect Jacinda Ardern and Deputy Prime Minister-elect Winston Peters have released the details of the coalition agreement for the new Government.

They have agreed to major policies including a re-entry to the Pike River mine, the introduction of three new commissions, a boost to the minimum wage to $20 per hour by 2020 and free doctor's visits for under-14s.

NZ First's ministerial portfolios will include Foreign Affairs, Infrastructure, Regional Economic Development, Internal Affairs, Seniors, Defence, Veterans' Affairs, Children, Forestry, State Owned Enterprises, Racing, Associate Finance, Associate Education and an Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Regional Economic Development.

Here are the priorities of the coalition:

A commitment to re-enter Pike River

A $1 billion per annum Regional Development Fund including:

  • Investment in regional rail
  • Planting 100 million trees per year in a Billion Trees Planting Programme
  • Commission a feasibility study on moving the Ports of Auckland, including giving serious consideration to Northport

Other regional policies:

  • Relocating Government functions to the regions
  • Re-establish the New Zealand Forestry service, located in regional New Zealand
  • Other large-scale capital projects
  • An increase to MPI BiosecurityNZ’s resourcing and a Select Committee Inquiry into Biosecurity 
  • Honour existing Crown Irrigation investment commitments
  • Recognise the potential for aquaculture in promoting regional economic growth
  • Examination of agricultural debt mediation as well as receivership fees and charges


  • Ensure work visas reflect genuine skill shortages and cut down on low quality international education courses
  • Take serious action on migrant exploitation, particularly of international students


  • Introduce a Zero Carbon Act
  • Introduce an independent Climate Commission based on the recommendations of the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Envrionment
  • "Significant boost" to Department of Conservation funding
  • Introduce agriculture into the Emissions Trading Scheme if recommended by the Climate Commission, with a 95 percent free allocation to the agriculture sector and revenue recycled to agricultural innovation, mitigation, and forestry planning
  • An emissions-free Government fleet (where possible) by 2025/26
  • Introduce a royalty on bottled water exports
  • Establish a tyre stewardship fund
  • Increase support for National Science Challenges, including for piloting alternatives to 1080 and countering myrtle rust and kauri dieback
  • No resource rentals for water in this term of Parliament
  • Higher water quality standards for urban and rural using measurements which take into account seasonal differences
  • Work with Māori and other quota holders to resolve outstanding issues in the Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary Bill in a way that is satisfactory to both Labour and New Zealand First


  • Re-establish the Mental Health Commission
  • Annual free health check including a free eye check for SuperGold Card holders
  • Teen health checks for all Year 9 students
  • Free doctor's visits for all under-14s
  • Progressively increase age for free breast cancer screening to 74


  • Review and reform of the Reserve Bank Act
  • Reform government procurement rules to give New Zealand companies greater access. 
  • Review the official measures of unemployment to ensure they accurately reflect the workforce of the 21st Century
  • Increase Minimum Wage to $20 per hour by 2020, with the final increase to take effect in April 2021
  • Increase penalties for corporate fraud and tax evasion
  • Investigate growing KiwiBank to position it to become the Government's Banker when that contract is next renewed
  • Strengthen the Overseas Investment Act, create a comprehensive register of foreign-owned land and housing

Research and Development:

  • Work to increase Research & Development spending to 2 percent of GDP over ten years

Social Development:

  • Increase funding for family violence networks including Women's Refuge and Shakti
  • Introduce programmes such "Ready for Work" for the long-term unemployed
  • Pilot the Youth Education, Training & Employment initiative
  • 800 extra places for the Limited Service Volunteer programme


  • Eligibility to remain at 65
  • Introduce a new generation SuperGold smartcard containing entitlements and concessions


  • Pilot counsellors in all primary schools
  • Restore funding for gifted students
  • A 30-year strategic plan for New Zealand education
  • Offer free driver training to all secondary students
  • Restore funding for Computers in Homes
  • Restart the Te Kotahitanga teacher professional development initiative


  • Re-examine the Defence procurement programme within the context of the 2016 Defence Capability Plan budget


  • Establish a Housing Commission

Law and Order:

  • Aim to introduce 1800 new police officers by 2020 and commit to a serious focus on organised crime and drugs
  • Increase Community Law Centre funding
  • Investigate a volunteer rural constabulary programme
  • Establish a Criminal Cases Review Commission


  • No new Parliamentary building to proceed this term
  • Independent review of the integrity of electoral processes and enrolments
  • Review the processes of Parliament to reflect an MMP environment
  • Introduce and pass a ‘Waka Jumping’ Bill


  • Build a museum to commemorate the Māori Battalion at Waitangi
  • Hold a full-scale review into retail power pricing
  • Allow a conscience vote for MPs on New Zealand First's Supplementary Order Paper to the End of Life Choice Bill, which provides for a referendum
  • Hold a Public Inquiry "A decade after Shand" to investigate the drivers of local government costs and its revenue base
  • Support New Zealand First's Racing policy
  • Work towards a Free Trade Agreement with the Russia-Belarus-Kazakhstan Customs Union and initiate Closer Commonwealth Economic Relations
  • Record a Cabinet minute regarding the lack of process followed prior to the National-led government's sponsorship of UNSC2334

Ms Ardern and Mr Peters signed the agreement at Parliament on Tuesday afternoon.

The Prime Minister-elect will announce the full line-up of ministers and their portfolios on Wednesday, and the new Government will be sworn in on Thursday.