133 Molesworth Street
PO Box 5013
+64 4 496 2000
22 June 2022
By email: [FYI request #19443 email]
Tēnā koe Will
Response to your request for official information
Thank you for your request under the Official Information Act 1982 (the Act) to the Ministry of
Health (the Ministry) on 24 May 2022 for:
Please release all details you have about the WHO treaty, including any draft contracts
On 9 June 2022 the Ministry requested a clarification and refinement due to the broad scope of
your request. On 10 June 2022 the Ministry received a response from you and request refined
...any copies of the WHO treaty for New Zealand. If you do please provide the full treaty.
If not please provide Jacinda Arderns emails regarding this subject
Thank you for your interest in the development of a convention, agreement, or other
international instrument to strengthen pandemic prevention, preparedness and response.
Member States of the World Health Organization, including New Zealand, jointly agreed
to begin negotiating a new treaty (or instrument) at a special session of the
World Health Assembly in November 2021. A pandemic treaty or instrument was a key
recommendation of the Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response, to help
improve the global community’s ability to respond to future pandemics. This information can be
found on: www.theindependentpanel.org/about-the-independent-panel/.
The negotiations towards a new treaty or instrument are being taken forward via an Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB)
involving all WHO Member States including
New Zealand. As part of the INB process, Member States will jointly determine what actions will
be required to better prevent, prepare and respond to a future pandemic. If you are interested in
learning more about the work of the INB, you can access further information
New Zealand sees the establishment of the INB as an important step towards preparing the
world for future health emergencies and ensuring that a global health crisis of this magnitude
does not occur again. Governments are working towards an outcome by the 77th World Health
Assembly in 2024: www.who.int/about/governance/world-health-assembly.
As negotiations within the INB are at an early stage and the exact form of the instrument is yet
to be decided, there is no such WHO treaty currently in existence for us to provide you with.
Therefore, your request for “any copies of the WHO treaty for New Zealand” is refused under
section 18(e) of the Act, as the information requested does not exist. However, you may be
interested to know that the Ministry is proactively releasing joint advice produced with the
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) that relates to negotiations towards a new
pandemic treaty or instrument in the coming weeks. This information will be published
The Ministry does not have access to Rt Hon. Jacinda Ardern’s emails. However, you may wish
to contact Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (DPMC) directly at: [email address].
Under section 28(3) of the Act, you have the right to ask the Ombudsman to review any
decisions made under this request. The Ombudsman may be contacted by email at: [email address]
or by calling 0800 802 602. Please note that this response,
with your personal details removed, may be published on the Ministry website at: www.health.govt.nz/about-ministry/information-releases/responses-official-information-act-
Nāku noa, nā
Sarah Turner Deputy Director-General Office of the Director-General
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