5 Oct 2009

Cost of rebuilding in Samoa put at $200 million

11:30 am on 5 October 2009

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key says the estimated cost of rebuilding Samoa after the tsumani is about $NZ200 million.

Mr Key cut short a holiday in the United States to visit Samoa on Saturday.

He told Morning Report on Monday the New Zealand Government has pledged another $1 million towards relief efforts, and the wider cost of rebuilding is about $NZ200 million.

He said it's likely New Zealand will pledge more funds and the Cabinet will consider in the next week or so what further aid is required.

The tsunami followed a magnitude 8.0 earthquake which occurred at 1748 GMT on Tuesday at a depth of 33km, some 190km from Apia.

Motorcade speed in Apia

The Prime Minister's office says it asked for a motorcade to be slowed during Mr Key's visit.

It's been reported that the motorcade reached speeds of more than 100km per hour as the Prime Minister was transported between the Samoan airport and the New Zealand High Commission in Apia.

The speed limit in Apia is 40km per hour and about 55km per hour outside the capital.

A spokesperson for Mr Key says concerns were raised by his staff as they were uncomfortable with the speed of the motorcade during the first stage of journey - and the speed was reduced.

She says the New Zealand police have informed the office that the motorcade reached a maximum of no more than 65km per hour.

The motorcade was travelling on the northern side of the island, which was not affected by the tsunami.