Kelvin Davis to attend George HW Bush's state funeral

Minister Kelvin Davis will represent the New Zealand Government at the funeral for former US president George HW Bush, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says.

Mr Bush, the 41st US President, died on the weekend at the age of 94. He was elected as President in 1988 and served until 1993.

Mr Davis, who is already in the US, will join American and international dignitaries and members of the Bush family at the state funeral in Washington.

"The United States is an important partner to New Zealand. It's appropriate we honour the passing of a former US President with senior Government representation at his state funeral," Ms Ardern says.

Earlier this week Ms Ardern praised the contribution Mr Bush made to international affairs over decades of service to the US.

"As an American envoy to Beijing, as CIA director, as Vice President for eight years and then four years as President, George HW Bush's statesmanship played a key role in helping to end the Cold War, which bought democracy to millions of people in Europe and diminished the threat of nuclear war.

"George HW Bush was a strong supporter of the international rules-based system, the rule of law and democratic values. Our deepest condolences are extended to the Bush family and the people of the United States of America at this time."