Election 2023 coalition negotiation length overtakes 2017 deal timespan 

Coalition negotiations have now overtaken the amount of time the 2017 deal took, but Christopher Luxon's adamant he's making "good progress" and is "pretty close" to a deal.   

The National Party leader had more meetings with ACT and New Zealand First in Auckland on Thursday and confirmed ministerial roles are now being allocated.  

After two weeks under the cone of silence, Luxon finally allowed a peak underneath - fronting the media before heading into a meeting.    

He said meetings on Wednesday had been "very productive" and was optimistic of a repeat on Thursday.   

"We're pretty close and for us you know we're just working through the last couple of issues."   

He confirmed the parties have now moved to discuss ministerial appointments.   

"We're already discussing some of that with both parties already."   

Asked if there have been some prickly parts of negotiations, Luxon said: "Yes, there have been moments of directness as there should be and needs to be.  

"We have to build trust with each other."   

His deputy, Nicola Willis, expanded on that.   

"At the end of the day, everyone has to get their ego and put it to one side," she said.    

Referring to Winston Peters perhaps, and him ghosting them on Tuesday after reportedly being offended by National's offering.

"My observation of Winston Peters is he is someone who has been in politics a very long time," Willis said.   

"I think it would take more than a document to offend him."

Luxon said he wouldn't read too much into it and called the suggestion of a snub "rubbish".    

The rest of Luxon's negotiating cabal joined him too, including Paul Goldsmith, Simeon Brown and scootering in Chris Bishop.   

Peters was there on Thursday afternoon. He said progress has been "pretty substantial" and refused to say whether he had been offended by National's first offer.   

"I had a meeting on occasion by request of an overseas foreign minister who was coming out of PIF in Rarotonga and heading off to APEC and he wanted to see me in Auckland, so I had to cancel five flights to fit in with him."   

Peters then swapped out for Seymour.   

These Auckland talks are not cheap - the daily rate of the Cordis conference rooms is about $1000.   

Asked if the taxpayer was picking up the bill, Luxon said he wasn't sure who was paying.    

"I can't give you an answer to that but the reality is we're doing it in a cost-effective way."   

He denied it was wasteful spending when the parties could be meeting at Parliament.