CAPITAL : Wellington
FLAG : The flag has two main features: the red, white, and blue Union Jack in the upper left quarter and the four-star Southern Cross in the right half. On the blue state flag the stars are red outlined in white. On the red national flag, used by individuals or commercial institutions at sea, the stars are white.
ANTHEM : God Save the Queen and God Defend New Zealand have had equal status since 1977.
MONETARY UNIT : The New Zealand dollar ( NZ $) is a paper currency of 100 cents; it replaced the New Zealand pound on 10 July 1967. There are coins of 5, 10, 20, and 50 cents and 1 and 2 dollars, and notes of 5, 10, 20, 50, and 100 dollars. NZ $1 = US $0.5555 (or US $1 = NZ $1.8) as of May 2003.
WEIGHTS AND MEASURES : Metric weights and measures are used.
HOLIDAYS : New Year's Day, 1 January; Waitangi Day, 6 February; Anzac Day, 25 April; Queen's Birthday, 1st Monday in June; Labor Day, 4th Monday in October; Christmas Day, 25 December; Boxing Day, 26 December. Movable holidays are Good Friday and Easter Monday. Each province has a holiday on its own anniversary day.
TIME : 12 midnight = noon GMT.
English is the universal language, although Maori, a language of the Polynesian group, still is spoken among the Maori population and is taught in Maori schools. It is the first language of about 50,000 Maori New Zealanders and became an official language in 1987, with the right of use in courts of law and before a number of tribunals. There are Maori-language preschools, immersion primary schools, and many radio stations.
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