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Green Budget: Biosecurity Measures Rolled Over

$2.75 Million Of Biosecurity Measures Rolled Over

Green Party Biosecurity Spokesperson Ian Ewen-Street MP today welcomed the Government decision to continue the $2.75 million of funding for Green biosecurity initiatives announced in last year’s Budget.

The $2.75 million negotiated by the Government and the Greens last year for a range of biosecurity initiatives including the implementation of four new biosecurity surveillance programmes, implementing an improved biosecurity awareness programme and three research studies on the biosecurity risks of sea containers, the decontamination of sea containers, and risk material detection.

This year, $2.75 million will be spent on enhancing plant pest risk management including procedures to detect the illegal import of genetically engineered plants, a strategic review of surveillance and boosts to the biosecurity awareness programmes and the new biosecurity surveillance programmes.

“More than anything I am relieved that this Government is prepared to take the issue of biosecurity seriously, and I am pleased with the willingness of Biosecurity Minister Jim Sutton to work with the Greens on this crucial national issue,” said Mr Ewen-Street.

“I am confident that the $2.75 million the Greens have secured for extra biosecurity measures will make a real difference at a time when all hands are needed on deck to protect our borders and our economy from unwanted foreign pests.”

Mr Ewen-Street said a robust biosecurity system was crucial to New Zealand’s economic interests and was a core Green Party priority.

“We feel the whole defence debate has been a red herring when the real threat to New Zealand comes from invasion through our ports and airports,” he said.

“The Greens are pleased to be working with the Government in this area. It is a priority area for the Greens and we congratulate the Minister and the Government for seeing the merit in our ideas and funding them in the Budget.”

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