Home PoA Implementation Kit

Brokering Control


New Zealand
: Report on the Implementation of the PoA, 2008 & 2010 
: 11/07/2008
National Report
: Stephen Wong, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

National laws, regulations and administrative procedures:

Arms Act 1983



National Marking Practices:

Guns produced in New Zealand are marked, and there is currently an Arms Amendment Bill (No. 3) before Parliament that will make it an offence for firearms manufacturers to “fail to place on a firearm or part of a firearm manufactured… an identifying marking”. Pistols, military-style semi-automatic (MSSAs) firearms and restricted weapons (prescribed by government) must be stamped with an identifying mark when transferred from one civilian to another if the firearm in question does not already feature such a mark. Markings must be retained and recorded on transfer There is no standard way in which firearms are marked in New Zealand. Generally, such weapons are marked with make, model, calibre and serial number. Marks are located in various places, and various parts can be marked differently. New Zealand Police have considered whether further approved standards for manufacturing and marking firearms could be implemented.

Marking at the time of import:

Marking of SALW in the possession of government armed and security forces:

Weapons held by the Police and the New Zealand Defence Force are already marked in a way that enables their identification and tracing. Police use weapons produced commercially, which already bear markings. All items held by the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) are serial numbered, usually by the manufacturer. If not numbered by the manufacturer, they are allocated an NZDF control number, and in some cases may have both. They are held on the NZDF Logistics Management System by individual serial numbers, and their location is recorded in terms of the unit to which they are issued.

Measures against the removal or alteration of markings:

The Arms Amendment Bill (No. 3) currently before New Zealand Parliament includes a specific offence of altering, falsifying, obliterating or removing an identifying marking on a firearm (except for some lawful purpose).


Accurate and comprehensive records for all marked SALW within their territory:

New Zealand maintains records of lawfully possessed pistols, military-style semi-automatics (MSSAs) and restricted weapons through both an import permitting and change of possession permitting regime. The record of pistols, restricted weapons and MSSAs is maintained indefinitely. New Zealand does not maintain a register of all firearms (eg. sporting firearms). However, as the vast majority of such firearms are imported into New Zealand, details of such weapons are in practice captured as part of the import process managed by Police.


Measures taken for undertaking traces and responding to tracing requests

The New Zealand Defence Force track/trace and serial manage all SALW via a combination of a computerised Enterprise Resource Planning System (SAP), computerised logistic systems and manual paper systems. This advanced process includes some SALW sub-components and all ammunition.

Operational Informaton Exchange:

The Oceanic Customs Organisation (OCO) performs an important coordination role in the Pacific. OCO members submit reports of seizures, methods of transportation and methods of detection to the Intelligence Section of the New Zealand Customs Service, which produces and publishes the report on behalf of the OCO. Customs Asia Pacific Enforcement Reporting System (CAPERS) is currently operating throughout the Pacific and Asian regions. CAPERS is an international based information and reporting system which is used in a number of OCO member countries throughout the Pacific region.

Needs and Request for Assistance::

Implementation challenges and opportunities:

New Zealand’s arms control regime generally complies with the requirements of the International Tracing Instrument. The passage of relevant regulations under the Arms Act, which are not yet in place but are currently being considered, would strengthen compliance.