Geospatial file of all NZ postcodes

A Spiers made this Official Information request to New Zealand Post Limited

The request was refused by New Zealand Post Limited.

From: A Spiers

Dear New Zealand Post Limited,

I am requesting a geospatial file showing all of the postcodes in New Zealand

Yours faithfully,

A Spiers

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From: Oia Officer
New Zealand Post Limited

Hello A Spiers
You may obtain a geospatial file showing all the postcodes in New Zealand by contacting [email address] to define which dataset best meets your needs, paying $300 and agreeing to standard licence terms.
New Zealand Post withholds the unrestricted free disclosure of a geospatial file showing all the postcodes in New Zealand (Dataset) under:
(a)section 9(2)(b)(ii) – disclosure being likely unreasonably to prejudice the commercial position of New Zealand Post, and
(b)section 9(2)(i) – withholding is necessary to enable New Zealand Post to carry out, without prejudice or disadvantage, commercial activities,
of the Official Information Act. We have considered whether the withholding of the information is outweighed by other considerations which render it desirable, in the public interest, to make that information available, but consider that it is not so outweighed.
To explain further, New Zealand Post has a range of proprietary datasets such as the Postal Address File, GeoPAF and the National Postal Address Database extracts, New Movers List, Rural Business and Rural Consumer Lists, New Zealand Change of Address file and the ChangeMyAddress service. These datasets have been collated by the effort and resources of New Zealand Post over many years. They are the commercial intellectual property of, and of considerable value to, New Zealand Post.
As a State-Owned Enterprise, New Zealand Post’s principal objective is to operate as a successful business, as profitable and efficient as comparable businesses not owned by the Crown.
These datasets are also used by New Zealand Post for operational purposes (ie. to ensure the efficient and accurate delivery of mail). They are made available to third party mail industry players (such as mailhouses or SendRight partners who carry out list cleaning services on behalf of others) to ensure the accurate addressing of mail, on standard licence terms for a charge.
Postcode data is available to the public via New Zealand Post’s Address-Postcode Finder, but not as a full dataset. The relevant datasets are made available on request for a reasonable charge which is part of our revenue stream, and with licence terms required. The licence regime ensures that the Dataset that is made available is up-to-date and accurate and that there are clearly understood and accepted restrictions around the use of that dataset. If unlicensed, uncontrolled versions of the Dataset enter the market, then there is no way of ensuring that such versions are up-to-date and used in a way that protects the integrity of the data.
If an out-of-date or inaccurate version of the Dataset is used for addressing, then addressing on letters sent out by that organisation may be incorrect. This could be a significant issue for large senders such as Government entities or major corporates who send millions of letters every year. Inaccurate addressing has a direct financial impact on the efficient operation of New Zealand Post’s core business and on its senders’ delivery of items and charges incurred.
New Zealand Post is concerned that if the Dataset is released under the Official Information Act on an unlicensed basis (i.e. without any conditions imposed on how that dataset can be used), then the rationale for requiring any other parties to receive that dataset under licence disappears, with the result that all distribution of the Dataset would be on an unlicensed, uncontrolled basis, and the integrity of the Dataset would be at risk as a result. Further, the provision of data as a revenue stream would be undercut or completely negated.
New Zealand Post considers the current licence terms and fee charged for the Dataset to be fair and reasonable.
If you are not happy with this response, you have the right to complain to the Ombudsman under the Official Information Act to seek an investigation and review of our decision to charge for the information. This can be done online or by email – please see

OIA Officer

This email with any attachments is confidential and may be subject to legal privilege. If it is not intended for you please reply immediately, destroy it and do not copy, disclose or use it in any way.

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