State of emergency lifted in Christchurch
National state of emergency has been lifted in Christchurch (file)
The state of emergency expired at 11.59pm last night and the recovery process has been handed over to the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (Cera).
"While the state of national emergency has been lifted, the Government remains committed to the rebuild and recovery of Christchurch city and Cera will lead that work," Civil Defence Minister John Carter said.
"I have been proud to witness the Civil Defence response to this earthquake and to see the great community spirit shown by New Zealanders not only in Canterbury, but around the country and the world. We are a nation that rallies in times of need."
Mr Carter also thanked overseas personnel who came to help with in the immediate aftermath of the quake.
"New Zealand is lucky to have so many good friends."
More than 180 people are thought to have died in the earthquake, which severely damaged hundreds of buildings. Parts of the CBD remain cordoned off.
The state of national emergency in New Zealand was declared on February 23.
It was the first to be declared under the Civil Defence Emergency Management Act 2002 and was repeatedly extended for nearly 10 weeks.NZPA