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United Future and foreshore ownership

Media statement

Monday, 22 March 2004

United Future and foreshore ownership

The public has displayed a very clear preference for public ownership of the foreshore and seabed – a position United Future is very happy with, according to party leader, Peter Dunne.

This is shown in a weekend poll which shows 72% of voters want the foreshore and seabed to be in public ownership.

“We have already told the Government that we will accept Crown ownership only if it clearly implies the Crown will be exercising the ownership rights of all New Zealanders,” he said.

“We are wary of Crown ownership by itself, since it has the potential to allow the Crown to alienate foreshore and seabed through future sales or as part of future Treaty settlements.

“Furthermore, we believe if the Crown were ever to contemplate such dealings, then it would have to be an entrenched vote in Parliament, i.e. 75% of the House would have to agree.”

New Zealand First recently indicated it would support the Government’s proposed foreshore and seabed legislation only if it included Crown ownership.

Ends

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