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Copeland keeps 'defence of realm' pressure on Govt

Copeland keeps 'defence of realm' pressure on Govt

United Future's Gordon Copeland renewed the party's call for the Government to face up to meet its border security obligations and stop trying to shift the cost to business.

In tackling the Prime Minister, Helen Clark, in Parliament this afternoon, Mr Copeland called on the Government to do away with a new $4 million charge on importers in what is clearly a "defence of the realm" issue.

"We're talking about the first duty of any government, which is to keep its citizens safe - and this Government is shirking that responsibility," he said.

"As I've said before, importers and exporters are being treated like an ATM, but the hard fact is that improved security at our ports is not a burden they should be carrying on the part of all New Zealanders.

"It is a government issue and should be a government expense.

"All New Zealanders benefit from improved security at our ports, not just those who import and export goods," he said.

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