New Zealand

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New Zealand’s first case of COVID-19 was discovered on 28 February 2020. After a few weeks of escalating border measures, the New Zealand government established a four level alert system on 21 March. Five days later, with 205 confirmed and suspected cases of COVID-19, the country moved to a level 4 alert — effectively a lockdown. The government has adopted a strategy of eliminating COVID-19 from the island nation and preventing its return through strict border measures, including quarantining all incoming travellers. On 4 May the country recorded zero new cases of COVID-19 for the first time since 16 March.

Key statistics

  • Confirmed cases


  • Cases per 100,000 people


  • Deaths


  • Recovered cases


  • Days since first case


  • Days since 100 cases


  • Days since highest daily increase


These statistics were last updated for 15 May 2020 and are drawn from the Coronavirus COVID-19 Daily Cases dataset, published by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at John Hopkins University, via API by Laeyoung.

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Two years ago, Toby Morris met Tasia for the Side Eye comic ‘Empty Shelves’. As New Zealand emerges from the strict Covid-19 lockdown of alert level four he catches up with her again, and finds that while some things have changed, others have not.

New Zealand Government COVID-19 policies

Last updated 11 May 2020

Movement of people

Physical distancing

Border measures

Citizens abroad

Domestic travel


Medical products and medicines

Health services

Testing and tracing


Healthcare workers


International cooperation

08 April 2020

Emergency government

25 March 2020


Public services

Public information

Policing and justice


Industry interventions

Business support

Financial markets and monetary policy


Wage and income support


Food and necessities

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COVID-19 Policy Watch is a collaborative project, created by volunteer researchers, journalists and policy experts from around the world. If you can help us add a country or keep policies updated, join our team. If you spot an error, let us know and we’ll do our best to fix it.

COVID-19 Policy Watch is created by Policy, a public interest media organisation that creates digital tools to support democracy. This project is published in partnership with a network of national media organisations, including The Spinoff (New Zealand) and Knack (Belgium). If you are interested in becoming a publishing partner, get in touch.