Wellington Scoop

Chris Finlayson leaving Parliament in January

News from National Party
National MP Chris Finlayson has confirmed he will leave Parliament in the New Year.

“It’s been a real privilege to serve as a Member of Parliament since 2005, nine of them as a Cabinet Minister. I have greatly enjoyed my time here, and I am very grateful for the opportunities that I have had.

“I was honoured to serve as Attorney-General, Treaty Negotiations Minister, and Arts and Culture Minister during the last National Government under the leadership of Sir John Key and Sir Bill English.

“Highlights of my time as a Minister include progressing the Tūhoe settlement, reforming intelligence legislation, and representing New Zealand at the International Court of Justice.

“It’s with pride that the National Party in its nine years of Government settled over sixty treaty claims.

“I was pleased to establish the Pukeahu National War Memorial Park in time for the 100th commemoration of the start of the First World War. Pukeahu provides the setting for remembrance and reflection on our nation’s history of military sacrifice going forward.

“As I have indicated on a number of occasions over the past few weeks, I plan to re-join the Bar after leaving Parliament.”

Mr Finlayson will give his Valedictory on 18 December, with his final day in Parliament in January, after a few remaining pieces of work in select committees have been progressed.

News from National Party
National Party Leader Simon Bridges has thanked retiring MP Chris Finlayson for his immense contribution to New Zealand and the National Party, following his announcement today he will leave Parliament in January.

“Chris Finlayson has been one of Parliament’s smartest MPs, keenest legal minds and an incredibly successful Minister. He will be a big loss to the National Caucus. He helped forge a new era in Crown-Maori relations, negotiating more than 60 Treaty of Waitangi settlements over his nine years as Minister. Chris’s immense understanding of the Treaty of Waitangi, his ambition to ensure full and final settlements and use of legal innovations have helped set New Zealand up for a post-settlement future.

“During his career he also oversaw a rewrite of New Zealand’s security and intelligence legislation, reformed the arts sector and repealed the divisive Foreshore and Seabed Act, replacing it with the Marine and Coastal Area Act which restored the common law customary rights removed by the previous Government.

“Chris has been a great and often forthright colleague whose counsel was sought regularly by colleagues and by successive National Party Prime Ministers and Leaders, including myself. I am sorry to see him announce his resignation from Parliament but am sure he will go on to have a successful career post-politics.”


  1. Michael Gibson, 29. November 2018, 8:50

    Mr Finlayson’s brilliance with Treaty Settlements has brought enormous benefit to everybody in New Zealand. We can all be thankful for this as well as his most skilful work in the other areas for which he has been responsible.

  2. Rumpole, 29. November 2018, 12:20

    The National Party are about to farewell Mr Finlayson from Parliament. He would have made an excellent leader at this crucial time for National. Does his eminent departure indicate further dissatisfaction with the current leadership?

  3. Citizen Joe, 30. November 2018, 9:33

    Weren’t the Treaty settlements supposed to be settled ten years ago? Gravy train for people like Rumpole in my humble opinion.