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Sutton Should Come Clean

Green Party Trade spokesperson, Rod Donald is challenging the Government to be honest about its stand over the privatisation of education, health and water services.

In Parliament on Tuesday Trade Minister Jim Sutton said his Government expected other countries to work toward the same level of trade liberalisation that this country has, before it engaged in further free market reforms.

"However, the position taken by this Government at the World Trade Organisation contradicts his statement in the House.

Last year Mr Sutton tabled a document at the WTO Council for Trade in Services that said: "First and foremost, New Zealand will actively encourage members to explore ways in which existing commitments in all services sectors, in terms of market access and national treatment, can be progressively liberalised."

"We don't trust this Government to negotiate the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) on our behalf," said Rod Donald. "Their agenda runs contrary to New Zealand's best interests."

"Jim Sutton's clearly being economical with the truth," said Rod Donald today. "He should come clean and make public New Zealand's requests and offers in the negotiations currently underway."

Ends

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