Driving age rises from 15 to 16 in New Zealand

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New Zealand is increasing its minimum driving age from 15to 16 in an effort to make its roads safer.

The country has one of the lowest driving ages in the developed world, a legacy of a mainly agricultural economy in which teenagers are expected to be able to operate farm vehicles from a young age. However, the Transport Minister, Steven Joyce, said young drivers are disproportionately involved in accidents that cause serious injuries.

While people under 25 years old account for just 15 per cent of New Zealand's drivers, they are involved in 35 per cent of serious accidents.