The announcement to proceed with re-entry into Pike River was "hugely meaningful", said Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
Yesterday, Pike River Minister Andrew Little said the intention now was "to get this job done, and try find out why those 29 men who went to work on 19 November 2010, and never came home".
Mr Little said he was satisfied there was a safe way of re-entry, which consisted of the single entry plan that was recommended by the Pike River Agency.
"It's an announcement I would have loved to have been there for, those families have waited long enough," Ms Ardern said from the East Asia Leaders' Summit in Singapore.
"They didn't need to wait for me to be home."
Ms Ardern said she sent messages to some of the Pike River families she was in touch with.
"Just from that I can see it’s been a hugely emotional day.
"It was a commitment we made and that we’ve now been able to deliver on, but of course the next phase is the most important one."