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Reflecting this, New Zealand's culture is mainly derived from Māori and early British settlers, with recent broadening arising from increased immigration.

The official languages are English, Māori and New Zealand Sign Language, with English predominant.

In 1841, New Zealand became a colony within the British Empire and in 1907 it became a Dominion.

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New Zealand's capital city is Wellington, while its most populous city is Auckland.

Sometime between 12 CE, Polynesians settled in the islands that later were named New Zealand and developed a distinctive Māori culture.

The House of Representatives is democratically elected and a government is formed from the party or coalition with the majority of seats.

If no majority is formed, a minority government can be formed if support from other parties during confidence and supply votes is assured. Since the 2014 election, there have been 71 electorates (which includes 7 Māori electorates), and the remaining 49 seats are assigned so that representation in parliament reflects the party vote, although a party has to win one electorate or 5% of the total party vote before it is eligible for these seats.

The Māori people are most likely descended from people who emigrated from Taiwan to Melanesia and then travelled east through to the Society Islands.

After a pause of 70 to 265 years, a new wave of exploration led to the discovery and settlement of New Zealand.

New Zealand is a developed country and ranks highly in international comparisons of national performance, such as health, education, economic freedom and quality of life.

Since the 1980s, New Zealand has transformed from an agrarian, regulated economy to a market economy.

Nationally, legislative authority is vested in an elected, unicameral Parliament, while executive political power is exercised by the Cabinet, led by the Prime Minister, who is currently Jacinda Ardern.

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