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Winston Peters: A Better Way

Palmerston North Public Meeting
Saturday 13 September, 2pm

Palmerston North Convention Centre, 354 Main St, Palmerston North

A Better Way

As New Zealanders we are privileged.

We are privileged to live in a great country, but with that privilege comes with responsibility.

That responsibility is to work for a fair, stable and prosperous country for all.

New Zealand First offers a better way forward.

In this election we have a comprehensive policy platform that will make the lives of Kiwi’s better.

Very little has been said in this election about defence.

National have neglected defence as they have so many other areas.

New Zealand First believes that we must maintain small but effective and credible armed forces.

That means we must offer our service personnel decent pay, conditions and career prospects.

They must be equipped with modern equipment that allows them to participate with our allies in peace keeping and other demanding roles.

National have undermined the morale of our armed forces by stealth by eroding pay and conditions, allowing the experience base to fall drastically, and by clearly signalling that defence is not a priority – look who they chose as Minister of Defence.

Do you know the name of the Minister of Defence?

New Zealand First is committed to maintaining professional armed forces – to deploy forces overseas who are in any way underprepared or ill equipped is simply unacceptable.
New Zealand First has serious concerns with the state of readiness of our armed forces and are calling for a comprehensive defence review.

The defence review will consider the broader strategic outlook New Zealand faces as well as all aspects of defence capability – personnel and military equipment.

As we have little confidence in the National Government to conduct an independent and objective review we consider this defence review should be headed by a respected international defence expert with the appropriate credentials.

This is what we else are committed to.

New Zealand First will implement an immigration policy that serves the interests of New Zealanders.

Sounds obvious – but National’s policy of allowing record immigration is contrary to the interests of New Zealanders.

That means instead of having the doors wide open New Zealand First will limit the intake of migrants to levels that do not add to unemployment and do not exert a downward pressure on pay and wages.

New Zealand First’s immigration policy is to take the skilled migrants we need – and that is fewer than the record levels of immigrants National is allowing in.

Massive immigration is the reason why the real average wage has been virtually static for years, and why half the workforce got no pay increase in the past year.

If you one of the 140,000 unemployed New Zealanders then our immigration policy will help you get a job.

Far too many of our new immigrants have been unskilled or older people – this brings no benefit to New Zealand. This unbalanced immigration must be stopped.

By cutting immigration New Zealand First will help the housing crisis and take pressure off the health and education systems and your superannuation.

We will also impose strict controls over foreign ownership in the areas of land, housing and strategic business assets.

New Zealand First will stop the losses and buy back our country.

So we will reverse the wholesale sell off of our farms by implementing a buy-back programme using the Cullen Fund and New Zealand First’s KiwiFund scheme.

We will collect comprehensive information on foreign ownership of land and property for the first time in New Zealand.

National has deliberately avoided collecting data so they can mislead and confuse the public with their empty assertions that all is fine and dandy – and that there is no need to worry about foreign ownership.

New Zealand First says that a bold new economic direction is needed.

We will return common sense to economic policy.

Everyone knows the Kiwi dollar is grossly overvalued, and the way it is eroding our manufacturing base, but the Government refuses to act.

New Zealand First is committed to reforming the Reserve Bank to give the country a sane monetary policy.

A realistic exchange rate will support our manufacturing sector and exporters and encourage investment into these vital areas.

Right now there are many currency traders around the world who love the NZ dollar.

Speculators in the NZ dollar are making fortunes meanwhile New Zealanders pay the price.

We will also put in place a programme to support regional New Zealand.

Right now Auckland is turning into a separate country that is distinct from the rest of the economy.
The distortions caused by addressing Auckland problems means the whole country suffers - such as with rising interest rates.

For over 630,000 New Zealanders National Super is important – because a decent pension is the cornerstone of a civilised society.

But take nothing for granted. National are not to be trusted.

New Zealand First will defend your New Zealand Super from the insidious campaign to weaken and undermine this fundamental plank of a decent society.

Another way we will protect your Super will be by putting an end to the foolish and utterly extravagant policy by which elderly migrants with no overseas pensions get full NZ Super after 10 years residency.

Tens of thousands of elderly migrants are winning Lotto in this way at the expense of Kiwi taxpayers.

You will have noticed there is much talk about poverty and inequality in New Zealand, but little action.

New Zealand First has common sense policies to actually make a difference and reduce poverty and inequality.

That is why we will take action to reduce the cost of living:
• By taking GST off food.
• By taking GST off rates.
These important steps will significantly cut the cost of living for New Zealanders.

As outlined today, New Zealand First has a great policy platform for the 2014 Election that offers all New Zealanders real benefits.

Our policies are all practical – affordable – and make a difference.
You know what to do on September 20.

It’s common sense!


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