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NZ First Continues Fight For Apple Access

31 May 2005

NZ First Continues Fight For Apple Access

New Zealand First Trade spokesperson Dail Jones has again called for the Government to take a tough stance over the blatantly anti-competitive behaviour of the Australian Government which continues to block market access to New Zealand apples.

Mr Jones said the Australians had long used the fire blight argument as an excuse to block our apples, despite the fact that studies backed by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) showed there was no scientific evidence that mature apples can transmit the disease.

“The softly-softly approach of Governments over the last 80 years must end now,” said Mr Jones.

“The Minister knows he has the evidence and other means to launch a case at the WTO now. Why he is delaying this process is anyone’s guess, but the pip fruit growers of New Zealand are suffering greatly as a result of his inaction.

“When we are part of the next Government we will be reviewing Closer Economic Relations agreement with Australia. “If access for New Zealand apples to the Australian market continues to be unjustly blocked we will refer this matter to the World Trade Organisation without delay,” said Mr Jones.


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