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How much longer will Powdergate go on?

How much longer will Powdergate go on?

David Carter - National Agriculture Spokesperson

National’s Agriculture spokesman, David Carter, is calling for a swift end to ‘Powdergate’, the long-running investigation into $50 million of alleged illegal dairy products exports.

The Serious Fraud Office has today announced it is opening an investigation into the alleged irregularities.

“The SFO had this matter first referred to it by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry nearly a year ago, yet it is only now starting an investigation,” says Mr Carter.

“Firstly, Fonterra investigated for three months, then MAF investigated for ten months, and now the Food Safety Authority says it needs another eight months to look into this issue.

“Do these various organisations not realise that the longer this investigation goes on, the greater the potential risk to New Zealand’s dairy export industry - an industry worth well in excess of $7 billion?

“When I recently questioned the Minister for Food Safety, Annette King, about Powdergate, she clearly knew little about the investigation and when it would be finished.

“This is an appalling state of affairs. While this investigation hangs over the head of our dairy export industry, one of the country’s biggest export earners is at risk. Every effort must be made to get Powdergate sorted for once and for all,” says Mr Carter.

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