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NZ-SA parliamentary friendship group established

2000 web siteNew Zealand MPs have formed a New Zealand-South Africa Parliamentary Friendship Group.

Labour MP Judith Tizard said the MPs decided to form the group to commemorate the second free and democratic election in South Africa.

"New Zealanders have welcomed the progress in democracy in South Africa that country has made in the last five years. New Zealand MPs decided to commemorate this important progress in a commonwealth country by establishing a formal parliamentary friendship group to encourage exchange between the two countries and to support understanding and friendship between us.

"New Zealand has been at the forefront over many years of asking South Africans to change their political and constitutential structures, they now need our support more than ever as they move towards a society which gives hope and opportunity to all its people," she said.

"I believe New Zealand has an important role and that the cultural constitutional and trading links between New Zealand need to be encourage and supported. MPs have a major role in all of these areas and I hope that this new move, which I understand is welcomed in South Africa, will be the start of a long term relationship for the benefit of both countries."

There are representatives of all parliamentary parties on the group which will meet with the South African High Commissioner to New Zealand on 24th August.

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