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Green Party is champion of manufacturing: Bradford

19 July 2006

Green Party is champion of manufacturing says Bradford

Embargoed to 1.30 pm Wednesday 19 July 2006

One of the ironies of politics is that Green Party, long portrayed by its detractors as the backward looking anti-industrialisation party, has now become the only party in the New Zealand Parliament to consistently champion the manufacturing sector, Green Party MP Sue Bradford said in her address today to the Engineering Printing and Manufacturing Union (EPMU) conference in Wellington.

"There is no greater example of this than our leadership of the Government's Buy Kiwi Made campaign," she says.

"From the period of formation of the NZ Greens we have had key activists such as myself with a strong passion against unemployment and for meaningful work. For full employment to exist, jobs need to be created. We soon discovered that trade and economic policy had a huge effect on the employment and job security. Particularly through the work of Rod Donald we came to support NZ manufacturing as an antidote to the ravages of globalisation on the planet and its people," Ms Bradford says.

"Manufacturing provides 14% of our jobs, 16 % of GDP, 19% of exports, yet it is at best patronised and at worse ignored by almost all political parties, the bureaucracy and even some of the business organisations that claim to represent the manufacturing sector.

"It often seems that individual manufacturers, a couple of small manufacturing organisations, the Council of Trade Unions (and its manufacturing affiliates) and the Greens are the only organisations committed to undertaking the serious work required to ensure that New Zealand still maintains its manufacturing base.

" I note that your union has become so frustrated with the lack of a manufacturing policy by the party that you affiliate to, that you are calling for the establishment of a Minister for Manufacturing," Sue Bradford tells the EPMU.

ENDS

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