20 Feb 2012

NZ pension portability for Cook Islands off the table

6:50 am on 20 February 2012

Cook Islands pensioners who have waited 19 years for a New Zealand government decision on superannuation portability will now have to wait even longer.

The New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully says the proposal is off the table indefinitely.

The Cook Islands News reports Mr McCully, who has been in the Cook Islands saying that the superannuation proposal would not be considered until New Zealand has digested the cost of the Christchurch earthquake.

A Rarotonga resident Les Priest, who has been campaigning on behalf of local and expat New Zealand pensioners living in the Cook Islands, says he is disappointed but not surprised by the decision.

He says he wouldn't be surprised if this comes up again as an issue just before the next election.

Mr McCully says he would like to revisit the proposal at a later date - although he did not give a clear timetable.