Niue is a large upraised coral atoll, named by Captain James Cook as “Savage Island” in 1774, after the locals refused him landing on three different attempts. In 1846, missionaries from the London Missionary Society (LMS) established Christianity.

Following a plea from the missionaries and Niue Chiefs, the island became a British Protectorate in 1900, and in 1901, in an agreement with the Bristish Government, Niue was Annexed to New Zealand.  The island gained self-government in free association with New Zealand in 1974.

Niue’s system of government follows a Westminister system.  The Niue Assembly consists of 20 members who elect a Premier and the Premier selects three cabinet ministers.  A general election is held every three years.  The head of State is HM Queen Elizabeth II, represented by the Governor General of New Zealand.

New Zealand provides substantial economic and administrative assistance to Niue.  The economy relies heavily on fishing licences and international lease of Niue’s four-digit telephone numbers.  Remittances from Niueans living abroad supplement the income of island families.  Tourism is a small sector in the economy but one with potential. Noni-juice production provides ongoing employment opportunities.

Media and Communication Landscape

The media and communication environment in Niue offers unique opportunities and challenges due to its scale and size. Find out more in the PACMAS State of the Media and Communication Report: Niue

Policy and Legislation
• Media and communication legislation in Niue includes the Communications Act 1989, the Communications
Amendment Act 2000, the Broadcasting Act 1989, Radio Regulations 1972 and the Business License Act 1997.
• The Niuean Constitution doesn’t reference freedom of expression or freedom of the media.
• There is no FoI legislation.
• A code of ethics is being drafted at the time of writing.
• There are no news specific content requirements specified in law.
• No special legislation exists for community media.

Media Systems
• Technicians are adept at finding solutions online on technical issues. Technicians source information and equipment from multiple sources.
• The National Disaster Council is the central regulatory body that organises disaster preparedness and response in Niue.
• A National Disaster Plan and a specific emergency plan for cyclones are already in place.
• There is some ambiguity about communication and coordination mechanisms around disaster response.
• Some standby infrastructure and equipment available to address disasters.
• Need for greater support to ensure disaster preparedness and in post disaster recovery.

Capacity Building
• Qualifications from academic institutions in New Zealand and Fiji are prevalent among practitioners.
• Preference for locally organised training and training of trainers for Niue media practitioners.
• There is no national media association in Niue.
• Most media organisations are affiliated with PINA.
• There are no TVET s in Niue.

Content
• Radio is an important platform for sharing information especially through the community affairs program.
• The National Climate Change Policy recognises awareness raising as one of the six focus areas.
• Translating climate change terminology is a challenge in climate change communication.
• NCDs are a priority issue within Niue but there is limited to no engagement with mass media to address it.
• NCD communication relies on notice boards, village meetings and word of mouth (in person or by phone).

Any opinions represented in the PACMAS State of Media and Communication Report 2013: Niue are those of the authors and research participants and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Government or the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

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