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Wool Is The Only Black Hole In Great Year

Wool Is The Only Black Hole In Great Year For Rural NZ

Monday 31 Dec 2001

Another disastrous year from the Wool Board spoilt an otherwise brilliant 2001 for rural-based industries, ACT Rural Affairs Spokesman MP Owen Jennings said today.

"All the planets lined up for the first time for decades. Strong overseas prices, generally good weather and a low dollar favoured farmers and growers.

"Wool is the only falling star. Wool prices are weak internationally, but continued arrogance from a few at the top of the industry prevent wool growers from achieving better incomes.

"The Wool Board leadership refuses to carry out the clear directive from the vast majority of growers - wind up and pay out to growers. Instead the Board wastes the reserves on uncommercial, unwanted schemes.

'The Labour-Alliance Government continues to ignore the problem. Minister Sutton is strangely soft on the plight of growers who desperately need leadership and direction. It is overdue for the Minister to step in and legislate the end of one of the most disastrous, socialist bodies ever set up in our rural history.

"Rural New Zealand needs to make the most of the good times. Rising on-farm inflation is already eating into profits as the Coalition Government fails to get compliance costs under control, and international commodity prices move back down again," Mr Jennings said.


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