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Minister's Breach Exposes Govt Ineptitude

The release of confidential information about Air New Zealand by Dr Cullen last week demonstrated a breach of commercial confidence and complete ignorance over the importance of respecting such information, National's Transport spokesperson Belinda Vernon said today.

"Dr Cullen's comments relating to the removal of the distinction between the A and B shares were inappropriate and out of order. The information was not public and his comments resulted in Air New Zealand having to make a statement to the New Zealand and Australian stock exchanges.

"What level of confidence can New Zealand businesses have in their dealings with the New Zealand Government if sensitive and confidential information is released by Ministers?

"Dr Cullen's flippant release of Air New Zealand's confidential information raises a question mark over just how much he and his colleagues can be trusted with commercial confidences. Mr Gosche's dismissive attitude about the release shows they don't even appreciate there is a problem.

"On top of the alleged breach by Mr Anderton of the Securities Act this betrayal of confidential information emphasises the lack of commercial nous and the poor ethical standards of the current Labour-Alliance Government.

"Dr Cullen's smart-alec approach to the business community has shown the Government's is out of its depth in dealing with commercial issues. They've messed up the flagship SOEs of New Zealand Post and TVNZ and now they're starting on businesses they don't even own," Ms Vernon said.

Ends


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