The Government is putting together an $11 million package to offset the fallout from coronavirus and attract tourists from countries other than China.
And Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says that New Zealanders who have been quarantined on a coronavirus-struck cruise ship in Japan will face a further quarantine in New Zealand - but that might not mean they can't see their family members.
Ardern outlined the tourism package at her post-Cabinet press conference today.
Ten millions dollars will go to Tourism NZ to market New Zealand as a travel destination to people in countries other than China - mainly Australia, the UK, the US and other parts of Asia.
A further $1 million would be for domestic marketing to bring tourists to the areas most affected by fewer Chinese tourists, mainly in Auckland, Rotorua, Queenstown and Christchurch.
"We hope this short-term investment will help to alleviate some of the pressures our tourism sector is feeling, post the border closures with China," Ardern said.
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She said the Government was still looking at a package for the forestry sector.
Today Cabinet had been updated with the latest Treasury advice, which was now forecasting 2020 GDP growth at between 2 and 2.5 per cent, down from the previous estimate of between 2.2 and 2.8 per cent.
"Everyone believes there will be an impact. The question is how large and for how long," Ardern said.
Treasury had advised that markets would stabilise in the latter half of 2020.
There were 11 New Zealanders on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan, and Ardern said they faced a further quarantine period when they eventually returned to these shores.
More than 350 people on the cruise ship have tested positive for coronavirus.
The quarantine on the passengers is set to end on Wednesday, though it is unclear if 70 new cases this week might cause it to be extended.
"One of the issues that exists of course is that people were kept on the cruise ship for the purposes of quarantine, but there has continued to be this spread of coronavirus," Ardern said.
"Our job is to make sure, as we bring those New Zealanders home, that we're looking after their health and the public health of people around them."
Ardern hinted that a quarantine might not prevent them from seeing their loved ones once they returned to New Zealand.
"They will need to be in a quarantine of some form. We're working through what that would look like [and] how we can support them, given so many of them have been away from their families for so long."
She said the two New Zealanders with coronavirus were being supported by consular staff in Japan.
She was still waiting to see whether Australia would transport Australian nationals on the cruise ship back to Australia, in which case Australia would also look to transport the 11 New Zealanders as well.
There were still no cases of coronavirus in New Zealand, and Ardern said that extending the travel ban from mainland China until February 24 was precautionary.
The Chinese Ambassador to Australia Cheng Jingye said that China had the coronavirus epidemic under control and criticised Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison's travel ban on foreign nationals leaving China.
The Chinese Ambassador to New Zealand Wu Xi is giving a press conference tomorrow, but has already said that New Zealand's travel ban should be lifted as soon as possible.
Ardern continued to refuse to be drawn on whether Deputy Prime Minister and NZ First leader Winston Peters had acted appropriately in relation to photos that were published of an ex-NZF president and two journalists reporting on donations to the party.
They were published on The BFD, which has been linked to Whale Oil, the blog at the centre of 2014 book Dirty Politics.
Peters had initially said "we" had taken the photos to show the kind of "behaviour" going on. He later backtracked and said a "supporter" took the photos.
Ardern said she disliked websites of that nature, but had not talked to Peters about the photos.
Those matters were for Peters to talk about, she said, and were not her responsibility as Prime Minsiter.
National Party deputy leader Paula Bennett said today that if NZ First was behind the photos being taken and published on The BFD, Peters should be stripped of his role as Deputy Prime Minister.
Bennett also asked whether NZ First was engaged with Simon Lusk, a central figure in the Dirty Politics book and a person that National had been involved with in previous campaigns.
"You hear stories about him being on retainer and actually being paid by someone else to do the dirty work for NZ First," Bennett said.
"We have nothing to do with people like Simon Lusk. We haven't for many, many years."