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Biosecurity strategy long overdue

Biosecurity strategy long overdue

National's Biosecurity Spokesman Shane Ardern says it's inexcusable that nine months after the Auditor-General released a scathing report on biosecurity the Government releases its biosecurity strategy.

"The Government has left New Zealand vulnerable to a serious incursion for too long already. With the huge increases in arrivals and imports over the past years the Government should have improved strategies long before now.

"Delays have already resulted in the entry of the Painted Apple Moth and the Asian Gypsy Moth. The eradication of both has been very costly for New Zealand.

"If we are to prevent more pests and diseases from establishing themselves here it is paramount officials have the ability to react quickly. The Government's strategy fails to adequately provide an emergency response capability," says Mr Ardern.

"It's ironic the Government releases a 67-page document detailing its biosecurity policy's shortfalls, and then says New Zealand has the best biosecurity system in the world."

"The Government's strategy is long overdue, we now need action, not talk, to plug the holes in biosecurity," says Mr Ardern.

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