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Govt must stay out of Air NZ industrial wrangle

Govt must stay out of Air NZ industrial wrangle

"Labour MPs can't help themselves from siding with their union sympathisers - even when the target is a company owned by the Government," says National Party Transport spokesman Roger Sowry.

He's commenting after former Transport Minister Mark Gosche accused Air New Zealand of treating its staff like dirt and taking part in 'stone age industrial relations'.

"It's yet another example of Government interference in a company that is doing what it needs to do to stay afloat in a highly competitive industry. "The Government, as a major shareholder in Air New Zealand, should be working to protect and grow the public's investment," says Mr Sowry.

"Ralph Norris and his new team have been given the green light by the Government to do that, but now Labour doesn't like the tactics.

"It's clear the Government does not want Air New Zealand to plan for its future as a successful stand-alone airline - given its support for the Qantas merger.

"It seems a real contradiction for Labour to back the merger, when Qantas has been carving staff from its workforce, in much the same manner," Mr Sowry says.

"Mark Gosche's latest outburst is yet another reason why the Government should not be dabbling in the airline industry.

"The stakes are high and the losses could be even higher," Mr Sowry says.

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