Citation(s) from the literature library

Parker, Sarah. 2011 ‘Balancing Act: Regulation of Civilian Firearm Possession.’ Small Arms Survey 2011: States of Security; Chapter 9, p. 274. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 6 July

Relevant contents


With the adoption of its Arms Act in 1983, New Zealand moved away from a system of registration of all firearms towards improved licensing of individuals and the registration of certain types of firearms only. Prior to this, the country had a decentralized system of firearm registration (including for shotguns, rifles, pistols, and restricted weapons). However, efforts to assess the accuracy of the existing (pre-computer, card-based) registration system and an internal police report, entitled Firearms Registration in New Zealand, suggested that maintaining an accurate registry that would genuinely assist police investigations was an enormous and expensive task that depended on owners' attitudes and willingness to provide updated information. Ultimately, it was determined that the money could be spent to better advantage on other police work. Accordingly, the system of registering long guns was abandoned under the 1983 law.

ID: Q5381

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