2 Oct 2017

Dual citizenship floated for Cook Islanders

2:15 pm on 2 October 2017

The Cook Islands minister of finance Mark Brown says dual citizenship could be the solution to his government's desire to join the United Nations.

Cook Islands Finance Minister Mark Brown

Cook Islands Finance Minister Mark Brown Photo: Phillipa Webb / Cook Islands News

All Cook Islanders are entitled to hold New Zealand passports under the special constitutional relationship between the two countries.

For this reason the Cooks efforts to gain UN membership have not been supported by the New Zealand government.

Mr Brown said dual citizenship would be advantageous for Cook Islanders who represent the island nation internationally.

He said another compelling argument is that the Cooks will become a developed nation next year.

The minister said with this status it will be more important for the country to increase its role on the international stage.

Mr Brown said UN membership would help the Cooks join agencies that could assist it to build its capacity.

Get the new RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs