More than 300,000 claims are expected to be received by the Earthquake Commission for the Canterbury earthquakes.

Almost 160,000 have been received for the September 4 quake, and 58,000 for the February 22 one.

The rest of the 240,000 received so far have been for the smaller quakes between those two.

Finance Minister Bill English says it is a very significant disaster by world standards and this far exceeds anything the EQC has seen before.

- Newstalk ZB