New Zealand or "NZ", in the South Pacific Ocean 1,200 km east-south-east of Australia, is the most southerly country in the world, a collection of islands in south-western Oceania containing about 4.5 million people, 30 million sheep, a few million cows (whose produce mostly goes to Fonterra), and thousands of species of unique indigenous plants and animals.

Its five most populous cities, in order from north to south, are Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington, Christchurch, and Dunedin.

Distinguished New Zealanders include Ernest Rutherford, Keith Park, William Pickering, Edmund Hillary, and Kiri Te Kanawa.

New Zealand is believed to have published the first newspaper "Go" column and has a good record of middling placings in international Go competitions. Organised Go began in 1975 and has continued ever since, with NZ championships and three or four regional championships most years. Go clubs flourish in several of the main centres, particularly Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch, under the umbrella of the New Zealand Go Society.

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