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Minister welcomes submissions on Arms Bill

Minister welcomes submissions on Arms Bill

Police Minister, George Hawkins is encouraging the public to make submissions on the Arms Amendment Bill (No.3), which passed its first reading in Parliament today.

"The Bill updates New Zealand's firearms regulations for the first time since 1992," said Mr Hawkins. "It also incorporates provisions that will be required if New Zealand is to sign up to the international Firearms Protocol, which is consistent with this country's stand against trans-national organised crime, gun-running and terrorism."

Part One of the Bill tightens the rules surrounding dealers' licences, the import of firearms and ammunition, the safe storage of guns and the temporary suspension of a firearms licence when Police are considering revoking that licence.

Part Two defines a number of new criminal offences, including manufacturing firearms for sale, hire or supply in the course of business without a licence, wearing or carrying body armour for illegal purposes and altering or removing the identifying marks on a firearm for an improper reason.

"The Bill is not designed to impose a universal firearms registration system on gun-owners," said Mr Hawkins. "Rather, its provisions will help ensure that New Zealand has effective control systems and record keeping for the export, import and manufacture of firearms.

"I am pleased the Bill is now with the Law and Order Committee, where the public has a chance to make submissions."

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