Countries around the world are beginning to hold celebratory events to welcome in 2010.
New Year arrived first in the South Pacific. At midnight local time (1100 GMT) fireworks were set off over Auckland’s Sky Tower in New Zealand.
A massive fireworks display has taken place in Sydney, Australia, with some 5,000kg of explosives sent up around around the famous harbour bridge.
An estimated 1.5 million attended the city’s dramatic show.
Fireworks were launched from the bridge, from boats in the harbour and from buildings around the waterfront.
Crowds had been gathering since the early morning, some of them camping overnight to secure the best vantage point for the 12-minute midnight fireworks display.
The state premier of New South Wales, Kristina Keneally, described the celebrations as the “best show on Earth”.
Police minister Michael Daley warned those attending to avoid excessive drinking.
“If you’re one of these fools that can’t handle their grog and likes to go out and ruin other people’s nights, make yourself a new year’s resolution to grow up and behave yourself and start practising that on New Year’s Eve,” he said.