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Government’s only contribution is delays

The Draft Global Settlement Agreement released today largely follows the plans and work started by the previous National Government, but with an unnecessary dose of delay and indecision, National’s Greater Christchurch Regeneration spokesperson Nicky Wagner says.

“In 2017, much of the work in negotiating the global settlement was nearing completion, but 20 months on we are only now getting a draft agreement. This delay has been knocking business confidence in the central city where people want certainty about the future and how the city will develop.

“The draft settlement sets out how the Crown will wind down its involvement in Christchurch’s rebuild and regeneration after eight years. It largely follows the blueprint and work that was underway by the previous Government.

“The current Government has only contributed delays and indecision to the conclusion of this work.

“A key part of this delay has been the Government’s indecision about the future of the Multi-use Arena. After commissioning a review of the arena in 2017, Minister Woods made little to no changes to the plan when the review came back in mid-2018. And a further 12 months on we still have no decision about how the arena will progress and operate.

“Another disappointment in the draft agreement is the inability for the Government to find someone to either lease or own the Convention Centre and take the liability off the taxpayer. This facility needs an operator that can connect into the international convention market, can bring conferences from around the world to Christchurch, and will add an extra income stream to the local economy.

“The draft agreement has followed the plans and work of the previous Government, but with unnecessary delays and indecision by this Labour-led government.

“I am keen to see what Christchurch thinks and look forward to hearing the feedback of residents and businesses who have until 5 August to make comment through the Christchurch City Council.”

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