Hagai resigned when the Court of Appeal completed its hearing of an appeal by Democratic Party leader Tina Browne, which could potentially reverse the outcome of this year’s election result on Rakahanga.
New Cabinet minister George Maggie did, however, make the trip – one of several he has undertaken since signing on with the CIP government.
CINews understands Maggie is attending the first China International Import Expo in Shanghai which will run until Saturday.
It brings together around 3,000 foreign and Chinese companies, with the hopes of boosting trade to the country.
According to Radio NZ, no major Western countries are attending and the Cook Islands is the only Pacific nation there.
China president Xi Jinping said the event will promote free trade, globalisation and China's “One Belt One Road” initiative.