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Clarity Required On Land Access

24 November 2005

Clarity Required On Land Access

New Zealand First is calling on the Minister of Agriculture to clearly state the Government’s position on land access.

“The uncertainty created by the Minister’s wait and see approach is unnecessarily raising rural tempers,” said agriculture spokesperson Doug Woolerton.

“The Government’s pre-election shelving of this issue is now being denied by the new Minister, when it’s as clear as day that it was too hot to handle during a closely fought election campaign.

“That’s politics, but the time has now come for some straight talking and some realistic and workable solutions.

“This issue has arisen because of differences over what is considered to be reasonable access, which have come about in part through changes in land ownership in recent years. There needs to be give and take and tolerance on both sides.

“New Zealand First has a simple answer to problems that might arise when foreign land owners with little understanding or appreciation of Kiwi culture unreasonably restrict access.

“Rather than use foreign ownership as an excuse for more red tape or unnecessary legislation, let’s make it harder for foreigners to buy our farmland,” said Mr Woolerton.

ENDS

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