Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has confirmed that her Cabinet is in agreement that it "is not viable" for the North Island's main port to remain in Auckland.

Ministers discussed the report into the Ports of Auckland and if it should be moved in their weekly Cabinet meeting today.

Ardern told her weekly post-Cabinet press conference that it is Cabinet's – and therefore the Government's – position the port needed to move.

But she stopped short of saying where it should be moved to, saying these sorts of details will be addressed by Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones on Thursday.


Jones will be releasing the port study, and the Government's recommendations.

He will also publicly release a report from the Upper North Island supply chain (UNISCS) working group.

Speaking to the Herald, Jones said the Government speaks when the Prime Minister speaks – "she has clearly stated that the port will move".

"I'm sure for the Auckland activists who want the port gone; it's basically money from heaven."

But "where those pennies will fall", in terms of details like location, timing and the process, will be unveiled on Thursday.

He also said it's important that as much of the official advice as possible about the port and its movement is made public.

Ardern told reporters this afternoon that her position on the port had been constant – it has to move.

There were significant environmental impacts for expanding the port and a number of reasons the current site was not viable.


Asked when the decision on when the Ports of Auckland will be made, Ardern did not say.

Waterfront 2029 – a lobby group which wants to see the port moved – has welcomed Cabinet's decision.

Its spokesman, Michael Goldwater, said that for far too long, political leaders have procrastinated on the Auckland port issue with endless report writing.

"Too many of those reports have been hijacked by vested interests but the one consensus that has emerged is that the car and container port in Auckland's CBD is not sustainable.

"Today, the Prime Minister and her Cabinet have shown strong and decisive leadership by accepting that consensus and being prepared to act on it," Goldwater said.

Moving Auckland's port to Northland was mooted in the report as the best solution.


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The report concluded that Auckland's current port operations are "no longer economically or environmentally viable".

The relocation has been called New Zealand's most ambitious infrastructure project ever, costing $10 billion and including a $1.6 billion rail line to Marsden Point.

Ardern has previously said the port will have to move one day, but has not committed to the plan.

• Part 1: The Big Idea

• Part 2: For and against: Why move the Auckland port?


• Part 3: The lure of the Waikato: Why not go south?

• Part 4: The North of Plenty: The prospects for Northland

• Part 5: Crunching the numbers to shift the Auckland port