With New Zealand in its final day of level 4 lockdown, the Government is urging people not to "slacken off the effort" when it comes to the country's Covid-19 fight.

After four weeks at alert level 4, at midnight tonight New Zealand will move to level 3 – an alert level the country will be at for at least two more weeks.

But Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has warned people not to get too complacent during the final lockdown hours.

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"Our marathon will take patience and endurance but we need to finish what we started," she told the Herald.

"Lives and livelihoods depend on our success as a nation."

This comes as the number of reported new Covid-19 cases was in single digits for the seventh day in a row.

There were nine cases yesterday, four new and five probable.

The Ministry of Health confirmed there were no Covid-19 related deaths yesterday, but seven people remain in hospital, and one is in the ICU in Middlemore.

Director general of health Ashley Bloomfield said although it was encouraging to have another day of single-digit cases, vigilance remains crucial.

"As we prepare to move to alert level 3 on Tuesday morning, it's really important not to slacken off the effort."

All the new cases are linked to existing community-based cases or clusters, or are a result of overseas travel, Bloomfield confirmed.


A spokesperson for the Ministry of Health said some of the new cases could be because of a lag in the confirmed clusters.

"Due to the incubation period, it may be some time before the cases emerge that are linked to clusters or confirmed cases.

"[For example] they may initially be classed as close contacts, and then become symptomatic."

Yesterday's nine new cases follow two days where there were five new cases and one when there were just three.

Asked if the ministry was concerned that the number of new cases was creeping up, a spokeswoman referred the Herald to Bloomfield's comments.

"Even though all these new cases are linked to existing community-based cases or clusters, or are a result of overseas travel, nine cases highlights the need for everybody to maintain a high level of vigilance in level 4 and as we move to level 3."

The number of new cases brings New Zealand's total to 1470, with 1142 reported recoveries.

This means the number of active cases is 343 – almost 80 per cent of all confirmed and probable cases have now recovered.

This comes as New Zealand's fight against Covid-19 continues to receive international praise.

The New York Times reported that New Zealand and Australia are "aiming to show the way" to the world, when it comes to suppressing the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to the article, Australia and New Zealand are "converging toward an extraordinary goal: completely eliminating the virus from their island nations".

It praised the leadership of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her Australian counterpart Scott Morrison.

Back home, the Government yesterday made one of its first pre-Budget announcements.

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Housing Minister Megan Woods said that as part of a yet-to-be-announced Budget 2020 Covid-19 spending package, $107.6 million will be spent putting up homeless in motels.

The new funding means an extra 500 motel units will be funded, taking the total to 1600.

The motels act as a place holder while the Government secures more long-term housing.

"Finding safe accommodation for our most vulnerable people through the Covid-19 pandemic has been a key priority for the Government," Woods said.

More than $30 million will be put towards a wraparound service to support those people's needs.

This comes as Auckland Council confidential papers, made public, reveal the Super City is facing a revenue loss of between $700 million and $900m over 15 months.

After a marathon meeting of the emergency committee on April 16, Mayor Phil Goff and many of his leadership team agreed to consult the public on a 2.5 per cent rates increase alongside the planned increase of 3.5 per cent.

Covid19.govt.nz: The Government's official Covid-19 advisory website