Prime Minister John Key defended New Zealand's "100 per cent pure New Zealand" tourism campaign in a speech to a tourism conference in Bali focusing on sustainable development.
Mr Key who is Tourism Minister as well as Prime Minister is in Bali for the Apec leaders' summit.
He said the 100 per cent pure campaign had been hugely successful since it was first used to market New Zealand internationally in 1999.
But he warned that it was not an environmental statement.
"I think it is important to be aware that 100 per cent Pure New Zealand is not an environmental message - and couldn't be anywhere in the world."
The New Zealand tourism sector understood, probably better than most, that the future of the industry relied on careful management of New Zealand's natural resources.
He said it had taken an implicit sustainable development approach and related it to two Maori concepts: kaitiakitanga or guardianship and manaakitanga, which implied a responsibility upon a host.
"These values are integral to much of what tourism offers in New Zealand."
Mr Key said links between New Zealand and Indonesia went back to the 1600s because the first European to sight New Zealand, Abel Tasman, lived in Jakarta, sailed from there in 1642, and was buried in Jakarta.
Mr Key said links could be older than that, because Maori were likely to have come to New Zealand through Southeast Asia and he had been told there were similarities between Maori language and Bahasa Indonesia.
Before the speech, Mr Key had a bilateral meeting with Papua New Guinea's Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill.
Mr Key promised to support PNG's bid to host the Apec leaders' summit in 2018.