The Chamber newsletter for April is available here
The Chamber newsletter for March is available here
The Chamber newsletter for February is available here
7 January 2021
Recruitment of a full-time CEO for the Chamber has begun, further details are available for download here
21 Dec 2020
The Chamber has made a submission to the Economic Planning Division on the draft Economic Development Strategy 2030. The submission can be viewed here
19 October 2020
The Film Industry have a repository for shared documents here
14 October 2020
We've moved. The Chamber office is now in Tutakimoa Road, just past Cooks Corner (opposite Bermuda House) in Avarua. All our other contact details remain the same.
11 October 2020
A DRAFT 'Terms of Reference' for the proposed Film Commission is available for download here
27 August 2020
Cook Islands National Superannuation Fund is circulating an advisory notice to assist foreign contract workers regarding their entitlement to a benefit on their permanent departure from the Cook Islands. Further information is available here or at www.cinsf.com
The 2020 Annual General Meeting was held on Wednesday 26th August 2020 at Edgewater Resort & Spa Conference Room.
A new constitution was adopted, allowing a transition to a corporate structure, with a Board of Directors and a CEO.
The Annual General Meeting of the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce will be held on: Date: Wednesday 26th August 2020 Time: 5.00 p.m. Venue: Edgewater Resort & Spa Conference Room
Agenda: 1. Confirmation of Quorum (10) 2. Proxy Votes 3. Welcome by the President 4. Confirmation of Minutes of previous meeting: - Annual General Meeting held on 23rd September 2019 5. Matters arising from these Minutes 6. President’s Report 7. Treasurer and Auditor Reports 8. Board and Committee Reports 9. Constitutional changes 10. Election of Officers 11. Nomination and approval of Auditor for 2020-21 12. Annual Subscriptions 13. General Business
The Cook Islands Government is launching a suite of credit initiatives designed to assist individuals and businesses throughout the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021.
The Business Continuity Credit Facility aims to provide fast access to cheap loans for daily cashflow needs to enable businesses to weather the current economic storm and better position them to return to normal after the pandemic. Details are available here
The Government is also introducing the SMART Economy Initiative (SMART) to provide a mix of grants and tax credits to support new commercial business ventures providing innovative ICT applications and services to business and consumers in the Cook Islands and abroad. Details are available here
Also being introduced is the SMART AgriTech Scheme (AgriTech) that will provide grant funding to commercial farmers and/or agribusiness ventures to encourage investment in technology and smart processes to improve yield, efficiency and profitability across the agricultural value chain. Details here
The CookSafe Contact Tracing Pilot launched on the 19th June. This is a collaborative initiative between Government and the Private Sector Taskforce with Te Marae Ora leading. Further information is available here.
5 June 2020 A Fact Sheet for Entry to the Cook Islands in response to COVID-19 Travel Restrictions from 20 June 2020 is available here. A Travel Advisory has also been issued.
3 June 2020 Cook Islands borders to open from June 19. More information here
24 May 2020
Government readies an enhanced stimulus plan in response to Covid-19. Full press release here
21 May 2020
The Private Sector Taskforce White Paper and appendices on COVID-19 Economic Response are available here
23 April 2020 Register for Business Grant and Wage Support before 30 April cut-off to keep options open: Businesses yet to apply for a business grant or wage subsidy are being urged to register before the April 30 cut-off. Government has set a 30 April cut off for people to register on its system administering the wage subsidy and business grants.
“Our advice to all business owners and employers: register now to keep your options open for the future,” says Fletcher Melvin, Chair of the Private Sector Taskforce. Ministry of Finance and Economic Management (MFEM) requires businesses to register with Revenue Management Division (RMD) and Cook Islands National Superannuation Fund (CINSF) by 30 April.
“Even if you don't qualify right now for the wage subsidy or a business grant, you still need to be on the system by the end of this month to ensure you're eligible in coming weeks and months,” he says. “Think of it as necessary advance admin. Keep your options open: register now.”
8th April 2020
Immigration Department Notice: The Covid 19 Border restrictions and shutdowns over the last month have necessitated the review of Permit Policies and application procedures as well as fee waiver consideration. Further information is available here
Business Grant and Wage Support applications at app.cinsf.com should be made through a browser (Chrome is recommended) on a PC or laptop - not on a phone or tablet, as various functions do not necessarily work on these devices.
2nd April 2020
Information on COVID-19 Tax Relief is available here
The Application Process for the Business Grant and Wage Support Subsidy Programme is detailed here
Applicants will need to make a declaration as part of the process, detailed here
Questions and Answers for the Business Support package can be viewed here
Customs Clearance and Supporting Paper Documents can now be lodged via email, details here
1st April 2020
Applications for Business Support Grants and Payroll Support can now be made at app.cinsf.com
(If you have difficulty loading this page, there are some hints here or try a different browser.)
MFEM's "Fact Sheet 2: Business Support" has been updated as of 1 April 2020 to reflect changes to the eligibility criteria for the Wage subsidy and Business cash grants measures. It can be accessed here
30th March 2020
Prime Minister Address to the Nation here. The Cook Islands remains COVID-19 free. All of the 275 swab tests sent to NZ last week have returned negative.
COVID-19 Economic Response Package (ERP) Fact Sheets are available for download.
There are 3 fact sheets available as part of the ERP: 1. Income support for individuals 2. Financial support for businesses 3. Tax support for individuals and businesses
Please familiarise yourselves with the fact sheets as it outlines the eligibility criteria and application process. They are available here, with summaries here and here.For more information, visit www.mfem.gov.ck
27th March 2020
Financial Support for Businesses: Applications open on 1st April for both the Wage and Training Subsidies, Cash Grants and other benefits. Full information is available here
Tax Support for individuals and businesses: Full information is available here
26th March 2020
MFEM have announced restricted hours and services from today, details are available here
Update on the Wage Subsidy process from the Private Sector Task Force Support Office:
If your business is planning to claim the government's wage subsidy, we are told it will be much quicker if you are registered as an employer with the Cook Islands Superannuation Fund (CINSF), and that all your employees are registered also. Further information on the application process will be posted here as soon as it is available.
25th March 2020
Parliament resumes sitting at 7pm, and can be followed live here
Parliament sits this afternoon to consider emergency legislation relating to COVID-19
The Prime Minister made a public announcement 6pm yesterday. Full announcement is available here
24th March 2020
Prime Minister Hon. Henry Puna is making another announcement at 6pm tonight with an update on the COVID-19 situation. This will be broadcast live here and Radio Cook Islands and will screen on Cook Islands Television before One News around 7:45pm.
The Bankers Association Cook Islands has issued a media release here
Code Yellow - More information on what that means here
23rd Mar 2020
The Punas have been activated around Rarotonga. The contact details for these Community District Management Structures are available here
Prime Minister announces special regulations regarding breach of compulsory isolation, with fines up to $10,000 and imprisonment up to 12 months. He also announces a change of status under the Emergency Response Plan for COVID-19 from Code Blue to Code Yellow. Full announcement here
Police Commissioner cancels all bar and nightclub licenses
The Commissioner of Police took further steps today in strengthening the health and safety measures around public places, cancelling the licenses of all bars and nightclubs. Commissioner Tetava advised the relevant license holders today that it was important every effort is made to follow the advice of the Ministry of Health Te Marae Ora to adhere to social distancing and hygienic practices. As the Chair of the Liquor Licensing Authority, the Commissioner conveyed the decision, which would prevent people from congregating in groups and posing unnecessary risks due to the possible threat of the coronavirus. The bar and nightclub licenses are canceled as from today until further notice. Link here
Prime Minister Hon. Henry Puna is making another announcement at 6pm tonight with an update on the COVID-19 situation. This will be broadcast live here and Radio Cook Islands and will screen on Cook Islands Television before One News.
Cook Islanders in NZ wishing to return home, are now required to register with the Cook Islands High Commission in Wellington, and self-isolate for 14 days prior to travel. Details here
UPDATED Directive from the Police Commissioner - Reduction in Policing Service delivery
"The Public is hereby advised, as a health and safety precaution to those working and visiting the Police offices, we will be suspending delivery of the following services effective from Monday 23rd March 2020 until further notice:
1. Driver’s Licence testing; 2. Issuing and renewal of Driver’s Licences; 3. Due diligence reports; 4. Issuing and renewal of permits for raffles, housie, importation of firearm and ammunition, importation of dog; 5. Issuing and renewal of Transport Licenses; 6. Issuing and renewal of Liquour Licences; 7. Liquor Licencing Authority and Transport Licencing Authority meetings.
All inquiries on cases must be emailed to the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone +682 22-499.
We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and ask for your patience and understanding as we traverse these challenging times. Stay safe Cook Islands.
Domestic travel restrictions drafted by the government to prevent the spread of COVID-19 come into force on Saturday March 21, 2020. The regulations restrict travel between Rarotonga and the Pa Enua (outer islands), and among the outer islands, for all persons unless that person has been in supervised quarantine for at least 14 days prior to their scheduled departure. Further information from the Ministry of Health is available here and here
Statement from the New Zealand High Commission
🚨 ATTENTION FOREIGN VISITORS 🚨
The New Zealand High Commission wishes to alert all travellers and accommodation providers that as of midday 22 March CI time, two airside transit windows are in place for repatriation purposes for foreign visitors. Third country nationals flying to their home country will be able to transit in Auckland International Airport. Further information is available here
Statement from the Prime Minister on 22nd March, regarding entry restrictions, supervised 14 day quarantine for ALL arrivals from today, and about staying at home - full text available here
22nd Mar 2020
COVID-19: Support Documents
You can browse the library of COVID-19 support documents here.
Individuals, businesses and organisations in the Cook Islands may freely download, forward, re-post or link to any of the resources on this website.
Cook Islands Economic Response to COVID-19: COVID-19 has spread rapidly across the world, resulting in impacts on the health of both individuals and economies globally. While COVID-19 itself has not yet reached the Cook Islands, the economic impacts are already being felt through substantial declines in tourism. An economic response plan has been developed which outlines policy actions that the Government will undertake in response to a range of possible economic impacts. The full document is available here. The financial details are listed in Appendix 1.
20th Mar 2020
Update to Economic Response Plan: Update 1- COVID-19 Economic Response Plan (ERP) is available here
PM Video Address: The address to the Nation from the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister can be viewed here
COVID-19 Website: The Government has set up a website to disseminate its latest COVID19 information: www.covid19.gov.ck
Financial Supervisory Commission wishes to ensure that the Bank’s honour the commitment they have made to the Crown in respect to our Covid-19 Economic Response Package. To that end, the Commission is providing an avenue for Cook Islanders to raise any concerns, issues or complaints they may have in respect to the response received from their bank. Details are available here
Parliament will sit on Wednesday to pass the Supplementary Budget of $35 million, with its support for individuals, the temporary loans relief, and the payroll support for businesses so that employees can receive at least the minimum wage - all for the next three months at least.
The Ministry of Finance is aiming to have all the systems ready for disbursement of the financial support by 30th March.
Payroll support is expected to be available for draw-down on Monday 30th March. Meanwhile, the Chamber urges employers to keep all employees on the payroll (with reduced hours or pay-rates if necessary) pending the implementation of the payroll support programme.
19th Mar 2020
Economic Response Plan. The full statement from Hon. Mark Brown, DPM and Minister of Finance, is available here. The press release is availablehere.
Te Aponga Uira are offering 100% discount on electricity consumption for domestic consumers, and 60% discount for commercial consumers. Aitutaki consumers will all get a 100% discount. More information, and terms and conditions, are available here.
Vodafone are offering a COVID-19 Care Plan, details as follows:
For residential customers, small business customers, incorporated societies and community groups:
Free Pension plans for 3 months starting from 1 March
Free landline rental for ALL customers for 3 months from 1 March
The due date for payment of monthly postpaid accounts will be extended from 30 days to 90 days
No termination of any customers service under financial hardship
A 50% reduction on all Postpay Broadband and Postpay Mobile plans for 3 months from 1 March
A 50% reduction on all local and national landline and mobile calling rates for 3 months (Prepay and Postpay)
Social distancing practices, including minimising close contact with other people, can stop or slow the spread of infectious diseases such as the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Cabinet convened a special meeting yesterday to consider several initiatives to reduce person-to-person transmission of infection.
An important initiative was the decision to bring the school holidays forward nearly a full month. The last day of this term will be Friday 20 March. At this stage there will be a two-week break. This applies to schools on Rarotonga only. Schools on the outer islands (including Aitutaki), our Pa Enua, will continue as usual.
In the meantime, schools have been tasked with teaching students to practice good hand hygiene and coughing etiquette before the holiday break. During this period education officials will be preparing remote teaching capability as a contingency measure.
The Government is urging all members of the public to help reduce close personal contact with others.
At home, health officials are asking people to wash their hands regularly, avoid touching your face, handshaking and kissing, regularly disinfect frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs, bathrooms, and kitchens, increase ventilation in all rooms, and avoid family outings when possible.
Government and health officials are strongly discouraging the gathering of groups of more than 50 people, large gatherings involving singing, sporting/church/cultural events, and gatherings at indoor venues where spacing between people of more than one metre cannot be achieved.
In the workplace, both employers and employees are being asked to stay at home if they display symptoms associated with COVID-19, defer meetings and gatherings or hold meetings outside, avoid shaking hands, practise proper hand hygiene and cough etiquette, and avoid sharing drink and food.
“We must all work together and continue to be extremely diligent in practising effective hand hygiene, cough etiquette and social distancing measures that local and international health officials have stressed.”
The Government is taking firm action to protect the people of the Cook Islands, residing in Rarotonga and the Pa Enua, especially our vulnerable populations,” said Prime Minister Henry Puna.
Vulnerable groups include people aged over 60 years, those with medical conditions, such as lung disease, hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. Those who smoke or are obese are also at risk of severe illness.
“A collective national effort will keep us prepared for any event,” the Prime Minister said.
For Health-related questions or concerns please visit www.health.gov.ck or contact the Healthline on 29 667. To view the Cook Islands Emergency Response Plan to COVID-19, go here.
8th November 2019
Economic Development Conference 2019 The Cook Islands Government is hosting the Economic Development Conference 2019 on 15th November 2019 at the National Auditorium. The Conference will inform the development of the Economic Development Strategy 2030 (the Strategy). This follows consultation with the Pa Enua and Rarotonga communities and a broad cross-section of business, industry and community stakeholders. Further information is available here
5th November 2019
Chamber facilitates Future Leaders student group in Rarotonga
The Chamber of Commerce was pleased to facilitate a number of the activities of the visiting Future Leaders group from NZ. 47 students undertook a week of activities, business and community visits, and advanced their leadership skills. Full story here
1st November 2019
UK Trade statistics for Sept 2019 are available for download here
30th October 2019
The 2019 AGM draft minutes are available for download here
29th October 2019
New Immigration Forms
The latest Immigration Entry Permit and Work Permit Application and Renewal forms are available here
14th October 2019
Enhancing Private Sector Contribution to Resilience Building
The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) in collaboration with the Government of Cook Islands through the Climate Change Office and the Chamber of Commerce supported two workshops for the private sector, with one focusing solely on the Cook Islands and the other bringing together participants from the Polynesia sub-region. The Cook Islands Private Sector Climate Change Issues Mapping Workshop was held from 01 – 02 October 2019.
The Polynesia Sub-regional Workshop on 03 – 04 October 2019 brought together close to forty participants from across the Polynesian countries representing the Green Climate Fund’s (GCF) National Designated Authority (NDA), the private sector and international partners. The workshop was officially opened by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance, Hon. Mark Brown.
The overall objective of both workshops was to advance the dialogue between the public and private sector on resilience building through improved access to climate finance and strengthening public private partnership. Further information is available here
11 October 2019
BIOSECURITY SERVICE REVIEW – OCTOBER 2019
The Ministry of Agriculture is conducting a review of the Biosecurity area of operations. Full information is available here.
We are asking Chamber Members to kindly consider and provide responses to the following:
1. What challenges does your business or organization experience in the area of Biosecurity? 2. What concerns have you got on how the Biosecurity process works for your business or organization? 3. What is working well currently? 4. Any other comments you wish to make in the area of Biosecurity.
Please provide your feedback to the Chamber office via email: email@example.com Please indicate if you wish to take part in any further consultative meetings with the Ministry of Agriculture.
The Cook Islands Private Sector Climate Change Issues Mapping workshop recently concluded on the 2nd October, 2019. It was an initiative driven and led by the Cook Islands Government, particularly the Climate Change division, and the Chamber of Commerce. It is a strong indication of Cook Islands Government's ongoing commitment to engage proactively with their private sector in their resilient development efforts. The outcomes of the workshop are expected to inform potential investments targeting the Green Climate Fund (GCF).
The Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce alongside the Climate Change Cook Islands office recently conducted a Private Sector Climate Change Issues Mapping workshop. This work was supported by the Intra-ACP Global Climate Change Alliance Plus Pacific Adaptation to Climate Change and Resilience Building (PACRES).
Participants were representative of the major sectors including outer islands participants. The two-day workshop enabled the private sector to review actions that had already been undertaken, as well as discuss the challenges and barriers that they faced with the added impacts.
The workshop concluded with the private sector participants as a collective exploring and sharing their thoughts on possible ‘game-changers’ that would strengthen the resilience of the private sector in Cook Islands and in the process enhance the economic and social resilience of the whole of Cook Islands.
The work will result in a report to the CCCI and CICoC and partners on the state of private sector actions thus far, a database on businesses and activities, both past, current and planned, and a GCF concept note draft for a Private Sector Climate resilience project.
23 September 2019
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING HELD
A successful 2019 Annual General Meeting has endorsed the new Chamber structure, and passed the required constitutional amendments.
The AGM then elected the following Office-bearers to the new positions for 2019-20:
President: Fletcher Melvin
Vice President - Enhancement: Teresa Manarangi-Trott
Vice President - Enterprise: Steve Anderson
Vice President - Engagement: Eve Hayden
Manager - Finance: Ana Inamata
Manager - Membership: David Street
Manager - Sponsorship: Greg Stanaway
Manager - Programmes: Celine Tommy
Manager - Policy: Tatiana Burn
Manager - Consultation: Bob Taylor
Manager - Media: Phillip Henderson
The immediate past-president is Steve Lyon
A warm welcome is extended to first-time office-bearers Ana Inamata and Celine Tommy.
A vote of thanks was extended to outgoing Executive members Temu Okotai, Raita Rongo and Mike Pynenburg. And in particular, appreciation was extended to Brian Baudinet, on his retirement after decades of work and contributions to the Chamber.
16 September 2019
The AGM will be held 5pm Monday 23rd September 2019 at Edgewater Resort & Spa.
The relevant reports and documents can be downloaded here.
12 September 2019
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING 2019
A reminder about the AGM to be held on Monday 23rd September 2019:
You can now download:
Information regarding nominations for Executive positions under the proposed new Chamber structure here.
Minutes of General Meeting of 20 August 2019. The meeting voted unanimously to support the proposed new Chamber Executive structure, to be formally adopted at the Annual General Meeting on Monday 23 September 2019, Item 9 on the Agenda here
1) Nominations are to be received for specific positions on the Executive
2) Nomination are to be made using this form, to be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or delivered to the Chamber office
3) Nominations close 10am Friday 20 September 2019
7 September 2019
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING 2019
The Annual General Meeting of the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce will be held on:
Date: Monday 23rd September 2019
Time: 5.00 p.m.
Venue: Conference Room, Edgewater Resort & Spa
Agenda: 1. Confirmation of Quorum (10) 2. Proxy Votes: 3. Welcome by the President 4. Confirmation of Minutes of previous meetings:
Annual General Meeting held on 11th September 2018
General Meeting held 20th August 2019
5. Matters arising from these Minutes 6. President’s Report 7. Treasurer and Auditor Reports 8. Board and Committee Reports
CI Tourism Industry Council
Business & Professional Women
Minimum Wage Review Panel
GEF & SRIC-cc National Steering Committee
Land Agents Registration Board
Road Safety Council CI
Liquor Licensing Authority
9. Constitutional Changes (proposed changes in red)
Section 7.2 – to read: The Executive Committee shall consist of a President, Immediate Past President, three Vice Presidents (one of whom shall also be the Treasurer) and seven Executive members
Section 14.2 – to read:…….14 days prior to the Annual General Meeting. By Resolution of the Executive Committee, the Executive Director may call for nominations for the Office-bearers and Executive Members to be made in writing in advance of the Annual General Meeting, and advise that incoming Office-bearers and Executive Members will each be assuming specific Manager roles.
Election of Officers:
Immediate Past President
Three Vice Presidents, one of whom shall be the Treasurer
Executive Committee (7)
10. Nomination and approval of Auditor for 2019-20 11. Annual Subscriptions 12. General Business:
The relevant documents (Nomination Form, Agenda, Advertisement, and proposed Constitutional Amendments) are available here.
16 August 2019
Breakfast Meeting 20th August.
Chamber members are invited to attend a Breakfast Meeting on Tuesday 20th August 2019 at 8.00 a.m. to be held at New Hope Hall in Tutakimoa (behind Computerman)
1. Presentation by Bluesky 2. Proposed restructuring of the Chamber to professionalise its management Please RSVP no later than 11.00 a.m. on Monday 19th August 2019
This meeting is supported by Bluesky Cook Islands
14 August 2019
Statement by the Private Sector to Pacific Island Forum Leaders, Funafuti.
The Chamber Executive is proposing a restructure of the Chamber to professionalise its management. A breakfast meeting of Chamber members is to be held later in August (time and venue to be advised) to discuss the proposal. MORE....
29 July 2019
Cook Islands Economic Development Strategy – July 2019 The Ministry of Finance and Economic Management (MFEM) will undertake an Economic Development Strategy (EDS) during 2019/20. The strategy is designed to address cross-cutting economic issues, with the aim of creating an economic environment that supports sustainable economic development over the next 10 years. The strategy is intended to be informative, involving a comprehensive and realistic assessment of the current challenges and opportunities facing the economy. The EDS will provide guidance for government decision-making over the medium and long- term.
The Economic Planning Division of MFEM are currently in the process of drafting information papers to inform public consultations. Please note that business owners may receive a survey in the coming weeks to help inform these papers. Responses will be treated confidentially. Following the drafting of information papers, public consultations will be undertaken, both in Rarotonga and the Pa Enua, culminating in an Economic Conference. The aim of these consultations will be to initiate discussions on the Economic Development Strategy and to gather further information on the challenges facing the economy. This will be followed by drafting of the Strategy and further public consultations prior to the official release which is anticipated in early 2020.
Financial Secretary Garth Henderson stated that ‘the Government is looking forward to working with businesses and the community in developing the EDS. This is an opportunity to share some of our research and data in a meaningful way, examine lessons learnt from our past, consider how our communities view our most serious development challenges, work together and come up with a focused and outward looking plan that will direct our development aspirations over next 10 years.’
23rd April 2019
Business Lunch with NZ High Commissioner The Chamber of Commerce invites the business community to lunch, to meet and welcome the New Zealand High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Her Excellency Ms. Tessa Temata ● VENUE: BAMBOO JACKS, TUPAPA ● DATE: TUESDAY, 30th APRIL 2019 ● TIME: 12 noon - 1:15pm Two Course Lunch - a Taste of Asia ● Chamber financial members: $26 ● Non-members: $30 Dress code: Business Informal / Island Casual. Tickets are available from: ● Chamber of Commerce office, BTIB Building, Ruatonga, between 9am -1pm ● Andersons’ office at the Airport, (next to Raro Freight), between 8am - 4.30pm ● CITYStyle (behind Dive Shop), Avarua, 9:30am - 5pm PLACES ARE LIMITED, SO PLEASE OBTAIN TICKETS EARLY TO AVOID DISAPPOINTMENT. NO DOOR SALES. Tickets can be reserved by calling Ph 20925
16th April 2019
Climate Change Development and Resilience Round Table
The Final Report (and annexes) to the Climate Change Development and Resilience Round Table that took place 14-15 March 2019 at Rarotonga, Cook Islands are available for download from our Publications page under 'Climate Change', or directly from here.
12th April 2019
To Tatou Vai Authority Bill 2019
The To Tatou Vai Authority Bill 2019 (Water Authority Bill) has been released for public comment. Members are encouraged to download and review this Bill, and forward comments to the Chamber of Commerce for inclusion in a consolidated response. Of particular interest is the concept of 'user-pays' and how that will impact businesses. The Bill is available for download from our Publications page under 'Bills', or directly from here.
1st April 2019
MINIMUM WAGE TO INCREASE ON 1st July 2019
The 2019 Minimum Wage Review Panel recommended that the Minister of Internal Affairs, the Hon. Mac Mokoroa, increases the rate of pay from $7.25 per hour to $7.60 per hour with the objective of achieving an $8.00 per hour threshold by 2020.
The report and recommendations have been discussed and approved by Cabinet last week. The Minister’s announcement indicates that the new rate is expected to take effect on 1 July 2019, with the new minimum wage rate being $7.60 per hour.
11th February 2019
IMMIGRATION ACT REVIEW
The Chamber has now made 2 submissions on the Immigration Act Review – the latest is available here
8th February 2019
MINIMUM WAGE SURVEY
The Chamber of Commerce is conducting its annual survey regarding the upcoming review of the Minimum Wage. The present Minimum Wage is $7.25 per hour.
This survey is open to all employers. The results will be collated to gauge employer's opinions on the Minimum Wage. This will assist the Minimum Wage Review Committee in making its report and recommendations to the Minister of Internal Affairs regarding the minimum wage for 2019/20. Respondents to this survey will not be identified; all responses are confidential, and only aggregated, anonymous data will form part of the report. Respondents may choose to identify themselves, or remain anonymous, or use a pseudonym.
Please note that, in response to comments from some employers, we have included additional questions in regards to a) whether the minimum wage should be universal and b) what the impact is on other pay bands.
Please respond to the survey only once per business. The more information you provide, the better your views will be reflected in the Minimum Wage Review report and recommendations.
Some questions have scope for comments, and general comments / proposals / suggestions are invited at the end of the survey.
The survey should take no more than 5 minutes. It starts here (or copy and paste the following link into your browser: https://goo.gl/forms/yRXO2IrFdTVmIcBI3 )
Any inquiries can be directed by email to: email@example.com or Phone: 20925.
Tuesday 29th January 2019
The Chamber of Commerce will hold a General Meeting on Friday 1st February 2019 at New Hope Church in Tutakimoa at 12 noon
AGENDA: 1. Proposed changes to Workers Compensation, Employers Liability Insurance (ELI), and Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) - drafts here
All interested members are urged to attend, to have a say on these important issues.
SURVEY Members will have received an email link to a survey on OSH/ELI, the results of which will assist the Chamber Executive in representing the members views. Members are encouraged to complete the survey before 9am 1st Feb. If you have not received a link, please contact the Chamber office on Ph 20925 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday 15 th January 2019
The Chamber of Commerce held a General Meeting on Tuesday 15th January 2019 at Trader Jacks Restaurant, Avarua, Rarotonga
AGENDA: 1. Business Mentors Programme 2. YES (Young Enterprise Scheme) 3. Incubator Programme 4. Review of Immigration Act 5. Manatua Cable 6. Te Mato Vai 7. OSH 8. CI Credit Bureau – Guest Speaker, Mr Damien Beddoes 9. Other
Tuesday 11th September 2018
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
The Annual General Meeting of the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce was held on:
Agenda: 1. Confirmation of Quorum (10) 2. Proxy Votes 3. Welcome by the President 4. Confirmation of Minutes of previous Annual General Meeting held on 14th Sept 2017 5. Matters arising from these Minutes 6. President’s Report 7. Treasurer and Auditor Reports 8. Board and Committee Reports ILO CI Tourism Industry Council CI Restaurant Association Bankers Association CI Business & Professional Women CINSF Pearl Farmers Association Retailers CI Minimum Wage Review Panel GEF & SRIC-cc National Steering Committee Land Agents Registration Board Road Safety Council CI CI Police Advisory Committee 9. Election of Officers: President Immediate Past President Vice President Treasurer Executive Committee (7) 10. Nomination and approval of Auditor for 2017 – 18 11. Annual Subscriptions 12. General Business
Copies of the reports tabled at the 2018 AGM are available for download here.
Monday Tuesday 21st May 2018
Survey regarding Immigration Review
The Government is currently reviewing Immigration legislation with the intention of introducing a new Immigration Bill.
The Chamber of Commerce has been invited to make a submission to this review and we seek your opinions in this questionnaire. The Chamber Executive Committee believes that this is an opportunity to improve the conditions for businesses, their owners, and the private sector in general. Your opinion is vitally important to ensure we make the most of this opportunity and properly represent your views.
This survey is open to all members of the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce. The outcome will be collated and used to assist the Chamber in making its report and recommendations to the Government via the consultant conducting the review.
Respondents to this survey will not be identified: All responses are confidential and only aggregated, anonymous data will form part of the report. Respondents may choose to identify themselves, or remain anonymous, or use a pseudonym.
Please respond to the survey only once per business. The more information you provide, the better your views will be reflected in the ImmigrationAct report and recommendations. As the consultant will be here later this week, please return this questionnaire no later than COB Thursday, 24th May if you want your voice to be heard.
This survey is administered by the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce. Any enquiries can be directed by email to: email@example.com or Phone: 20925.
Minimum Wage Increase Effective from 1st July 2018
The minimum wage will increase to $7.25 per hour effective from 1st July 2018. This new minimum wage rate applies to all hours worked from the 1st July. The relevant Order in Executive Council can be downloaded here.
Thursday, 26 April 2018
Public Private Partnership Workshop, ADB/Chamber of Commerce
Held at Trader Jacks, this workshop was presented by Mr Chris Russell, ADB Public Private Partnership expert, “Building awareness to understand the Public Private Partnership”. The Workshop provided participants with an understanding of the drivers behind and the benefits of contracting out and entering into Public Private Partnerships (PPP’s) for the delivery of infrastructural assets and services normally provided by government entities. Itlooked at different types of PP’s, why they are used, how they are used and their limitations.
Thursday 22nd February 2018
Minimum Wage Review 2018 - Employer Survey
The Cook Islands Minimum Wage is currently subject to review. As usual, the Chamber of Commerce is surveying employers to get their views on the minimum wage, and an appropriate rate for 2018/19.
This survey is open to all employers in the Cook Islands. The outcome will be collated and used to assist the Minimum Wage Review Committee in making its report and recommendations to the Minister of Internal Affairs regarding the minimum wage for 2018/19. The present minimum wage payable in the Cook Islands is $7.00 per hour.
Respondents to this survey will not be identified; all responses are confidential, and only aggregated, anonymous data will form part of the report. Respondents may choose to identify themselves, or remain anonymous, or use a pseudonym.
Please respond to the survey only once per business. The more information you provide, the better your views will be reflected in the Minimum Wage Review report and recommendations.
This survey is administered by the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce. Any inquiries can be directed by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org or Phone: 20925.
The Chamber hosted a luncheon at Tamarind House to meet Hon. Winston Peters, NZ Foreign Minister. We heard him speak on the relationship between NZ and the Cook Islands, and the latest on issues such as superannuation, development assistance and NZ's concern about the the recent suspension of permanent residency applications. Radio NZ article here.
The Chamber is inviting submissions from members regarding the ILO Legislative Compliance Review (links below), and these may be emailed to the Chamber office for consideration at email@example.com
Tuesday 12th December 2017
A General Meeting will be held:
Date: Tuesday 12th December 2017
Venue: Trader Jacks Restaurant, Rarotonga
Time: 4.30 p.m. – 6.00 p.m.
Subscriptions for 2018
Reminder of new member category
Progress on financing for a Director
Legal review of Employers Liability Insurance (ELI), (AGM resolution)
Progress on Reticulation – Chamber perspective
New Acts passed by Parliament relating to business
Employers Liability Insurance, Labour laws and OSH review – Presentation by Mike Pynenburg
Opportunity to ask questions for Chamber to raise with ILO / INTAFF
The ILO Legislative Compliance Review (Final) and Legislative Review PowerPoint presentation are available for download here.
Thursday 14th September 2017
Annual General Meeting
The Annual General Meeting of the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce was held on:
Date: Thursday 14th September 2017
Time: 4.30 p.m.
Venue: Trader Jack’s Restaurant, Rarotonga
The agenda, reports and other documents are availablehere. The new office bearers are listed here.
Friday 12th May 2017
Minimum Wage Increase Effective from 1st July 2017
Government has announced that the minimum wage will increase to $7.00 per hour effective from 1st July 2017. The relevant Order in Executive Council can be downloaded here.
Thursday 6th April 2017
PRESS RELEASE - Minimum Wage to Increase to $7
The Chamber of Commerce conducted an on-line survey of employers. Previous surveys conducted by the Chamber had received and received responses from 80+ companies across most industry sectors, with approximately 20% coming from the Pa Enua, notably Aitutaki. However, on this occasion, doubtless due to time constraints, responses were only received from 37 companies. While the response rate does not constitute a statistically rigorous survey, there were consistent trends which allowed qualitative inferences to be drawn from the results, particularly including from the comments sections of the survey. READ MORE.....
Monday, 27 March 2017
PRESS RELEASE - Worker's Compensation:
The Chamber of Commerce has taken an interest in the operation and implementation of the Worker’s Compensation scheme for many years and there is no doubt that workers need insurance cover for accidental injury or death.However, employers have a great number of concerns. READ MORE.....
Thu, 19th January, 2017
Chamber Welcomes New Zealand High Commissioner The Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce hosted a dinner to meet and welcome the New Zealand High Commissioner to the Cook Islands HE Peter Marshall and Mrs Pamela Marshall at BAMBOO JACKS, TUPAPA. Chamber of Commerce members, intending members, and numerous members of the business community attended, and heard Mr Marshall speak on his previous experiences in the Pacific and beyond, and the ongoing relationship between New Zealand and the Cook Islands
Thu, 1st December, 2016 New Zealand Business Champion Speaks at Chamber event One of New Zealand’s top business advisors and leaders was in Rarotonga at the beginning of December. Michael Barnett is the current Chief Executive of the Auckland Regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry and is also a director of both the Auckland and New Zealand Chambers of Commerce and Industry. He has been in his present role for 26 years. Mr Barnett addressed a Chamber event held at the Edgewater’s Umu Hut on Thursday 1st December at 5.00pm, which was open to both members and non-members.
Link to Auckland Chamber of Commerce Resources
The Auckland Chamber of Commerce website has a large library of resources for businesses and professionals. Publications are available free-of-charge to assist with business startups, recruitment, business plans, debt collection, share issues and much more. While NZ-centric, these provide valuable information for the private sector. Browse to our Publications page here.
We extend our acknowledgement and thanks to the Auckland Chamber of Commerce.
Mon, 29th August 2016
The Business Mentors completed a week's engagement with dozens of local businesses. Thanks to Janet, Bruce, DD and Terry.
2016 Annual Reports
The 2016 Annual Reports are available on our website here.
2016 Annual General Meeting
The Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce conducted its 2016 Annual General Meeting on 23rd August 2016, and the 2016/17 Office Bearers are listed on our Membership page.
"The Chamber of Commerce is the business centre
for the private sector in the Cook Islands.
We aim to assist, advocate, train and develop, and collaborate with
our businesses, Government, and international agencies
to promote a business-enabling environment in the Cook Islands."