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Farmers - Government Meeting Constructive

Farmers - Government Meeting Constructive

Farmers had a constructive meeting with Government ministers over the foreshore and seabed issue, said Tom Lambie, President of Federated Farmers of New Zealand (Inc).

Mr Lambie, Vice-President Charlie Pedersen, and two Federation policy staff met with Deputy Prime Minister Michael Cullen, Attorney General Margaret Wilson, Minister of Maori Affairs Parekura Horomia, and officials of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

The meeting included a briefing on Government proposals on the seabed and foreshore ahead of an official announcement by Dr Cullen next week.

"We have undertaken to keep those proposals confidential until they are released. However we are pleased that we had the opportunity to participate in the consultation along with other interested parties. This is beneficial to both the Government and farmers," he said.

"We reiterated the concerns of farmers, and indeed all coastal property owners, over the potential to erode their ownership rights if wrong decisions are taken," Mr Lambie said.

Some farmers own land in the coastal marine area and therefore have ownership rights to parts of the foreshore. Others operate marine farms or have properties adjacent to areas of foreshore and seabed. And some own the foreshore and seabed due to erosion of former farmland.

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