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A Green recipe for growth and peace

A Green recipe for growth and peace

The Green Party has moved a no-confidence motion in the Labour-Progressive Government, based on the failure of the Prime Minister's Statement to Parliament to address fundamental concerns about the direction of social, environmental, foreign and economic policy.

The Greens would not, however, support National's original motion of no confidence, because their prescription for the country is worse.

"The Government's continuing determination to ignore the wishes of the majority of New Zealanders and lift the moratorium on commercial release of GE made our decision to withhold confidence inevitable," Co-leader Jeanette Fitzsimons said.

"Our cooperation agreement gives us the opportunity to work with the Government on some specific policy areas, however, the PM's Statement failed to offer any assurance that vital issues of social justice and sovereignty would be addressed.

"Of particular concern is the failure of the Prime Minister to condemn America's massive military build-up in the Gulf and the threat it poses to world peace," said Jeanette.

"This Government claims to favour a peaceful resolution to the crisis but sends a different signal to Washington by placing our navy and air force at the disposal of the US-directed operation in the Gulf and Indian Ocean.

"This is a growth-obsessed Government, to which a four per cent annual increase in GDP has become an end in itself, rather than a means to an end. Instead of a narrow statistical target in which oil spills, crime and resource depletion are included in 'growth', the Greens believe we should target growth in real wellbeing.

"Affordable housing, education and training, public transport, renewable energy and organic technologies are just a few industries where we should foster growth, while many components of economic growth - fossil fuels, poisons, tobacco and production of waste, need to shrink.

"However, despite our differences, we can and will continue working with the Government to improve the lot of all New Zealanders."

A full copy of Jeanette's no-confidence amendment and speech-in-reply are available at http://www.greens.org.nz

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