In documents released today, the government says the Pacific will need significant investment to recover from the Covid-19 fallout.
The foreign affairs ministry says the region is facing an array of uncertainties in a significantly altered international environment.
It says New Zealand will have to do more to help the Pacific's weakened states through serious challenges, even if the coronavirus is kept at bay.
The paper says security risks will rise, with greater opportunities for people smugglers and transnational crime.
It also says international engagement on climate change will be dampened - but there is an opportunity for what it calls a green recovery.
The ministry says its priority will involve reinforcing the Pacific reset.