Viewing cable 05WELLINGTON988

05WELLINGTON9882005-12-21 21:10:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Wellington
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

212110Z Dec 05
E.O 12958: N/A 
REF USDA 675578 
¶1.  Embassy grants country clearance to Jack Staub, 
Horticulturist, UDA/ARS/MWA/Madison to visit Christchurch 
from January 18 to July 31, 2006 to visit Lincoln 
University to acquire education in area of bio-chemical 
genetics of carotenoids and aroma; assist with student 
research on aromatic volatiles of grape. 
¶2. Embassy understands that country clearance is the 
only assistance required. 
¶3. Point of contact at the American Embassy is the office 
of Foreign Agricultural Service, USDA.  Their contact 
details are: 
Tel: 64-4-462-6038 
Fax: 64-4-462-6016 
Email: agwellington(at) 
¶4. Travelers can exchange currency at the airport upon 
arrival and ATM machines are readily available throughout 
New Zealand.  Check cashing privileges at the Embassy are 
restricted to traveler's checks only upto US100.00. 
Personal checks will not be accepted. 
¶5.  Visitors should use local taxi service, which is 
generally safe, reliable and frequent.  Taxi fare from 
the airport to downtown Wellington hotels is 
approximately NZD30.00.  A commercial shuttle service is 
also offered at the airport. Taxi fare from the airport 
to downtown Auckland hotels is approximately NZD55-NZD65. 
A commercial shuttle service is also offered at the 
Auckland airport. 
¶66.  Travelers can exchange currency at the airport upon 
arrival and ATM machines are readily available throughout 
New Zealand.  Check cashing privileges at the Embassy are 
limited to traveler's checks only up to USD 300.00 daily. 
Personal checks will not be accepted. 
¶7.  Biosecurity Fines: 
The Government of New Zealand instituted fines for non- 
declared biosecurity hazards on travelers entering New 
Zealand with undeclared plant, animal or food material. 
Travelers found carrying these undeclared items will be 
immediately fined NZD200.00 (USD150.00).  Biosecurity is 
a serious issue in New Zealand and fines will be 
administered immediately and without warnings. 
¶8.  Security Information: 
a.  All U.S. citizen personnel serving under the Chief of 
Mission authority in a temporary status of 30 days or 
more must complete appropriate overseas personal security 
training prior to travel (04 State 66580).  Employees who 
have completed the Security Overseas Seminar course at 
the Foreign Service Institute (FSI) after June 1, 2000, 
meet this requirement.  All other TDY personnel must 
either (1) complete the approved seminar at FSI entitled 
"Serving Abroad for Families & Employees" (SAFE), or (2) 
have their agency certify to the Department of State's 
Bureau of Diplomatic Security that the employee has 
undergone equivalent security training.  The contact for 
this training is Assistant Director for Training at (703) 
205-2617.  Country clearance will not be granted for any 
traveler with planned TDY in excess of 30 days if this 
information is not stated/certified. POC for additional 
information is RSO Wellington. 
b.  The U.S. Mission in New Zealand currently rates the 
threat from transnational and indigenous terrorism as 
low. There are no terrorist groups or support groups 
believed to be operating in New Zealand at this time.  In 
light of the worldwide security alert all visitors should 
heighten their security awareness and report any unusual 
incidents to the Regional Security Officer. 
c.  Anonymous telephonic threats and obscure threat mail 
have occasionally targeted U.S. diplomatic missions in 
New Zealand.  In response to U.S. policies and actions, 
various groups in New Zealand have demonstrated 
occasionally at the Embassy in Wellington and at the 
Consulate in Auckland.  These demonstrations are usually 
small and are peacefully conducted.  During these 
demonstrations, the host country police and protective 
services normally provide adequate protection to the 
Embassy and Consulate. 
d.  New Zealand is considered a medium threat crime 
environment. As such, Wellington and Auckland have 
experienced an increase in violent and petty crimes, but 
they are usually non-confrontational in nature.  However, 
home invasion robberies and assaults, once very rare, are 
becoming more frequent.  Burglaries and thefts occur 
countrywide but primarily in the large cities of 
Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington, and visitors 
should be especially aware that street crime, such as 
scams and pickpockets is a daily occurrence in these 
cities.  Common sense precautions should be taken, 
especially at night, to avoid becoming a target of 
e.  Generally, New Zealand does not play a significant 
role in the world drug situation; however, evidence 
indicates that New Zealand has been utilized as a transit 
point for shipments of Ecstasy, Heroin and Cocaine to 
Australia.  The most abused drug in New Zealand is 
locally produced methamphetamine and cannabis.  There 
have been increased amounts of lab seizures and violent 
crime associated with groups attempting to control this 
f.  All forms of public transportation are generally safe 
at all times of the day; however, at night visitors 
should use common sense precautions so as to not become a 
target of opportunity. 
g.  The traffic situation in Auckland can be difficult 
with a moderate amount of congestion. Wellington and 
Christchurch traffic is significantly better; however, 
during rush hour moderate delays can be expected. 
Visitors are advised that traffic drives on the left-hand 
side of the road. Visitors are advised that traffic 
accidents are common and that it is safe to pull over so 
that police may take an accident report.  However, 
visitors who experience hostility or anti-American 
sentiment should depart the scene immediately and notify 
the RSO. 
h.  Precautions should also be taken to not discuss 
sensitive or classified information outside secure 
environments or over unsecured and/or cellular 
telephones, and to securely safeguard classified or 
sensitive information at the Chancery and not at hotels 
or residences. 
i.  Visitors should also be aware of the State 
Department's Consular Information sheet for New Zealand 
and the most recent Worldwide Caution Public 
Announcements, which are available via the Internet at 
j.  In essence, visitors to New Zealand must exercise 
appropriate caution and be alert to their surroundings 
with regard to their personal security.  Suspicious 
incidents/activities should be reported to RSO Wellington 
(Telephone (64)(4)462-6000, 24 hours/day).