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Economic Zone Bill must go back to committee

Grant Robertson
Deputy Leader

16 August 2012

Economic Zone Bill must go back to committee

National’s Exclusive Economic Zone legislation is deeply flawed and should be sent back to the Local Government and Environment Select Committee for further work, says Labour’s Environment Spokesperson Grant Robertson.

Labour will seek leave for the Exclusive Economic Zone Bill and all SOPs to be referred back to the Local Government and Environment Select Committee when the Bill is debated in Parliament this afternoon.

“Last week the Minister released amendments making significant changes to the Bill. After careful examination it is clear that these changes significantly undermine the Bill and create enormous loopholes. The Bill should go back to committee so the changes can be discussed with officials and the impacts of the changes carefully considered.”

“Of major concern is the purpose clause. It’s good that the Government has aligned the Bill more closely with the Resource Management Act, but Labour still believes it is inconsistent with our international obligations by not including the principles of protection and preservation of the marine environment. The Bill also fails to provide the same guidance for decision-makers that is in the Resource Management Act.

“Amy Adams’ changes have been rushed and have created large loopholes without tightening up protection. Creating a robust regime for managing our Exclusive Economic Zone is too important to be rushed through with ill-considered changes.”

ENDS

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