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English in but Cullen kept out

Hon Bill English

National Finance Spokesperson

12 September 2000

English in but Cullen kept out

Despite protestors blocking the entrance to the World Asia-Pacific Economic Summit, National's Finance spokesperson Bill English managed to get into the venue in Melbourne last night and today.

Mr English got into the forum this morning by jumping out of a taxi, going round police erected barriers and sprinting across the street into a group of fifty police who pushed their way through the protesters into the forum. Mr English was then able to attend breakfast discussions with Australian Federal Ministers and officials.

Other participants entered the building after a tense confrontation with large numbers of police and protestors who may have included New Zealand representatives Sue Bradford and Nandor Tanczos.

"Right now the government needs to restore local and international confidence in the New Zealand economy. It's bizarre the Government's de-facto representatives at this important gathering of economic leaders are two Green MPs Ms Bradford and Mr Tanczos whose main achievement has been to prevent New Zealand's current Minister of Finance from explaining to economic opinion leaders just where New Zealand is headed.

"This doesn't reflect well on New Zealand at all. In fact it makes us look like a Mickey Mouse outfit.

"It's hard to understand how any of this is good for rebuilding confidence in New Zealand," Mr English said.

Mr English has further meetings with economic opinion leaders tomorrow and returns to New Zealand tomorrow night.


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