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Anderton wonders about National Party commitment

Hon Jim Anderton

Minister of Agriculture, Minister for Biosecurity, Minister of Fisheries, Minister of Forestry
Associate Minister of Health,
Associate Minister for Tertiary Education,
Minister Responsible for Public Trust

Progressive Leader


05 December 2006 Media Statement

Anderton wonders about National Party commitment

Jim Anderton, Minister of Agriculture and third-ranked Cabinet member in the Labour-Progressive coalition government, today said he wondered about the National Party's commitment to the agriculture, forestry, fishing and biosecurity sectors.

"Our primary industries are the lifeblood of our economy. Agriculture alone makes up over half our export earnings, while productivity in New Zealand's primary industries has been rising faster than the average of the rest of the economy, and its share of GDP has increased from 14 per cent to sixteen per cent," said Mr Anderton.

"Yet in their new line-up the National Party has ranked Agriculture at no. 10, Fisheries at no. 20, and Biosecurity and Forestry and no. 23. It's hardly giving the sectors their due."

Mr Anderton added that currently the only industries in New Zealand that have global scale and reach are the primary industries. "As Minister for New Zealand's primary industries, I am totally committed to helping maintain the competitive advantage of the country’s land-based industries. In this I have the strong support of the Prime Minister. It is a pity that the new leadership of the National Party doesn't rate them so highly," Jim Anderton said.

ENDS

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