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Megan Woods becomes new Housing Minister, Kris Faafoi elevated in Ardern's Cabinet reshuffle

Megan Woods has been elevated to Housing Minister as the Prime Minister announced her Cabinet reshuffle today.

Three Ministers, including Ms Woods will work on the Housing portfolio. Kris Faafoi will be an Associate Minister of Housing, and has been lifted into Cabinet.

A "trusted pairs of hands", was how Jacinda Ardern described Mr Faafoi. He is also taking over the portfolio of digital services.

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The Housing portfolio will now be headed by Megan Woods who work alongside Kris Faafoi and Phil Tywford. Source: 1 NEWS

Mr Faafoi will focus on public housing, Ms Woods will focus on Kiwibuild and Nanaia Mahuta will be given Associate Minister of Housing (Māori Housing).

"I grew up in a state house so having that privilege of a state house has meant a lot to me and my family," Mr Faafoi said. "Taking over that challenge is something I’m looking forward to."

Phil Twyford, who was previously Housing Minister, will now be Minister for Urban Development and has picked up Economic Development from David Parker.

After losing the Housing portfolio, Mr Twyford said in a statement he was "as frustrated as anyone else that we have not been able to deliver as many KiwiBuild houses as we had hoped".

"I've put my all into it. But I look forward to continuing to help Megan Woods and the other housing Ministers, by focusing on the legislative and regulatory tools we need to facilitate affordable house building."

"KiwiBuild area needs sharper focus," Ms Arden said. "It's no small task."

"We have made good progress on the long term issues facing New Zealand," she said. 

MP for Christchurch East Poto Williams has been moved up to be a Minister outside Cabinet. She will be the Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector as well as Associate Minister for Social Development, Immigration and Greater Christchurch Regeneration.

"I think I bring some strength," Ms Williams said today. "Particularly around community health, mental health and my family violence experience, to really helping this Government deliver on its wellbeing Budget."

Kris Faafoi and Jacinda Ardern. Source: 1 NEWS

Other MPs who have been given additional roles are Grant Robertson who becomes Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission, Jenny Salesa who becomes Minister of Customs and Peeni Henare becomes Minister of Civil Defence.

The reshuffle is Jacinda Ardern's first since taking office. She said previously changes would be "relatively minor".

Megan Woods. Source: 1 NEWS

Speculation was high that Phil Twyford could lose his Housing portfolio in today's cabinet reshuffle, despite the Prime Minister defending him in saying he's done an "incredible job".

Last year, Mr Faafoi took over Clare Curran's broadcasting portfolio and Meka Whaitiri's customs portfolio. 

Ms Curran lost her position inside Cabinet, and Ms Whaitiri lost her position of being a Minister outside Cabinet. 

Kris Faafoi and Jacinda Ardern. Source: 1 NEWS

The Green Party and NZ First positions were set out in the confidence and supply and coalition agreements with Labour.

NZ First have Foreign Affairs, Infrastructure, Regional Economic Development, Internal Affairs, Seniors, Defence, Veterans’ Affairs, Children, Forestry, State Owned Enterprises, Racing, Associate Finance, Associate Education and an Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Regional Economic Development.

Green Party have Climate Change, Associate Finance, Conservation, Women, Land Information New Zealand, Associate Environment, Statistics, Associate Transport, Associate Health and an Undersecretary to the Minister of Justice (Domestic and Sexual Violence).

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1 NEWS Political Editor Jessica Mutch McKay has the details of Jacinda Ardern’s Cabinet reshuffle. Source: 1 NEWS