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National welcomes Australian election result

Bill English Leader of the Opposition

11 November 2001

National welcomes Australian election result

Bill English today spoke to John Howard to congratulate him on his victory in the Australian election.

"John Howard's victory has been an incredible political achievement against the odds," Mr English said.

"Australians have voted for a strong emphasis on international security and continued strong economic management. This result has also shown that the Third Way is not going anywhere.

"Australian voters appeared to be convinced by a unified coalition taking clear positions on matters of international interest. It is a sharp contrast to the infighting over the Afghanistan war which is eroding the credibility of the New Zealand Labour Government.

"The New Zealand Government has been caught with a defence policy designed for the way the world used to be, rather than the way it is. New Zealanders disagree with that policy.

"The Australian election also shows that our left wing Government cannot rely on its traditional advantages in health, education and spending. There is, now both in New Zealand and Australia, a clear shift in mood away from the so-called Third Way, where left wing Governments pretend to be conservative. That also spells trouble for Helen Clark.

"I look forward to meeting with John Howard and his Finance Minister Peter Costello in the near future," Mr English said.

Ends

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