Can smart contracts replace lawyers?

What are smart contracts? They allow you to exchange anything of value in a transparent way which cuts out the middleman (for example, lawyers). Take renting a holiday home for example. If the renter pays the landlord the required amount of cryptocurrency (e.g. Bitcoins), the smart contract will release a digital key to the renter…

Finding New Zealand along the Belt and Road

The Belt and Road Initiative (B&R, OBOR, 一带一路), announced by President Xi Jinping in late 2013, is China’s most ambitious development strategy. It aims to create new economic zones based around the ancient Silk Road trade route overland (the belt) and across the sea (the road). China expects to trade more than US$2.5 trillion a…

Pop-up Globe gets its onion dome

In February 2016, the world’s first full scale temporary working replica of the second Globe, the theatre Shakespeare and his company built to stage his plays, popped up in Auckland and created quite a sensation. The 2016 season ran for 12 weeks with 128 performances and sold over 100,000 tickets. It was extended twice due…

Off the plan buyers to brace themselves

For those struggling to find a home in Auckland, off the plan purchases were looking attractive for a while, mainly because buyers were able to get around banks’ Loan-to-Value Ratio rules, sometimes paying only a 10 per cent deposit compared to a 20 per cent deposit required to buy an existing home. However, potential off…

Protests put Bakken pipeline work on hold

Following days of protests, developers of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline halted construction at the North Dakota site on Tuesday. The following day, a North Dakota federal court ordered the protesters to stop blocking the construction work. Several protesters had been charged with disorderly conduct or trespassing at a construction site. Also known as…

Project Bayhill in Timaru

Timaru is welcoming a $42 million development overlooking Caroline Bay. The proposed development will include a six-floor office building incorporating food and beverage tenancies and commercial tenancies, single to three-bedroom apartments and penthouses, and 68 x 4 to 4.5 star hotel rooms. The project will be one of the biggest ever seen in Timaru. It…