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National’s Defence of Lochinver Sale Weak in The Extreme

National’s Defence of Lochinver Sale Weak in The Extreme
New Zealand First would stop the sale of large North Island farm Lochinver and any other sales like this, New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters reiterated today.
“We will not work in any arrangement with any party that allows our land to fall into the hands of foreign owners,” Mr Peters said. ”We would not allow this deal.”
“New Zealanders are opposed to selling off our land and houses, yet National has a track record of ignoring the people, as they did with the state assets sale referendum.
“Claims by Minister for Economic Development Steven Joyce today that Lochinver is a ‘ridiculously small piece of land’ are in the character of National – dismissive.
“Of course, the 13,000-hectare station is relatively small compared with the amount National has let go – they have chalked up foreign land sales of a million hectares in under six years.
“Foreign buyers have a huge advantage over Kiwi bidders with access to much lower interest rates. As more and more foreign sales are ticked off by National, and its rubber stamping machine the Overseas Investment Office, prices go higher.
“Had land sales been restricted to New Zealand residents, the sale price would be affordable to New Zealanders. Kiwi farm and home ownership is being pushed out of reach of so many.
“Remember, many farms like Lochinver were built with a great deal of support from taxpayers’ money, such as marginal land development assistance.
“Why build up a resource using taxpayers money then let foreigners take the advantage?
“New Zealand has built up one of the world's leading primary industries, and by ourselves we will continue to do it.
“Foreign investment should always comply with strict economic and social benefit criteria for New Zealand.
“Mr Joyce’s mindless view that all foreign money is good demonstrates that his understanding of this country’s history is miniscule.
“Worse, he has no idea of what land and houses are being sold because apparently under his business model actual figures don’t matter but anecdotal pixie dust does.
“His performance on TV3’s The Nation this morning was appallingly weak, frenetic and bully boying.”

ENDS

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