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Budget must address holes in biosecurity policy

Shane Ardern

National Biosecurity Spokesman

8 April 2004

Budget must address holes in biosecurity policy

The further spreading of pig wasting disease, after a serious breach of our biosecurity borders, is a clear sign that the Government needs to step up and address holes in biosecurity policy, says National's Biosecurity Spokesperson, Shane Ardern.

Mr Ardern's comments come as exotic pig wasting disease, which was first found in Waikato last year, is thought to have now spread to Taranaki and the South Island.

"The Government must provide resources in the Budget to prevent infestations from occurring in the first place, rather than waiting until something happens and forking out millions for costly eradication.

"A number of reports have highlighted the bureaucratic hoops that have to be jumped through in order to respond to breaches of border control and threats to biosecurity.

"The Minister, Jim Sutton, has done nothing to address these problems," says Mr Ardern.

"I agree with Massey University epidemiologist, Professor Roger Morris, who says that with the current legislation a secure environment is impossible to achieve.

"We must get to the root of the problem rather than wait for a serious threat before taking action."


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