Joyce checks in on Kaikōura

12:23 pm on 11 January 2017

Finance Minister Steven Joyce will meet with Kaikōura business owners affected by last year's 7.8 magnitude earthquake.

State highway 1 - north of Kaikoura

State Highway 1 north of Kaikōura was badly damaged in the earthquake, with several landslides covering the road in places. Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

Mr Joyce was expected to travel with Transport Agency representatives to the seaside town via the recently reopened State Highway One, south of Kaikōura this morning.

He will then return to Christchurch through the alternative inland route.

It is Mr Joyce's first visit to Kaikōura with the finance portfolio, but last year as the Economic Development Minister he granted a financial support package to earthquake-affected businesses and days later extended it to include larger business.

Steven Joyce in Kaikoura to speak to bigger business about government help.

Steven Joyce in Kaikōura last year. Photo: RNZ / Ian Telfer

The town's mayor, Winston Gray, said it was likely business owners would ask for ongoing government support until State Highway One north of Kaikōura reopened.

That was not expected until the end of the year.

Kaikōura Cheese owner and cheesemaker Daniel Jenkins said last week the government's support package, due to end in March, should be extended.

"If they want businesses to stick around, that's going to have to come through until that main north road opens," he said.

A spokesperson for Mr Joyce said he would meet with local business owners this afternoon. He would update the new Economic Development Minister, Simon Bridges, on how things were progressing.

Read full Kaikōura earthquake coverage here.

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