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Greens Delighted That Local Pharmacists Will Stay

24 May 2002

Green MP Sue Kedgley said today she was delighted that the Government has backed off a plan to deregulate pharmacies, which would have allowed foreign pharmacy chains into New Zealand.

"Both the Pharmacy Guild and the Green Party campaigned hard against the Government's plan, and after six months the Government has seen sense," said Ms Kedgley.

"The livelihood of many small community-based chemists has been saved, and many clients will continue to receive the same level of personal, high quality care that they are used to as a result.

"Allowing big international chains, who put profits first, to take over our pharmacies would have been a major mistake."

Ms Kedgley said the Government's change of heart was an example of MMP in action.

"When the Government realised they wouldn't get the numbers to ram their ridiculous plan through Parliament, they had to back off.

"The Government's new proposal, to keep majority ownership of 51 percent in pharmacists hands and to allow pharmacists to own up to five pharmacies, is much more sensible."

ENDS

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