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Labour’s regional development fund to support Palmerston North

Labour will consider a proposal to develop an inland port at Palmerston North, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.

“The Palmerston North community has developed plans for an inland port which will bring jobs and economic growth to a region which has been badly neglected by this Government,” says David Cunliffe who has been meeting with people in the Manawatu today.

“We will examine the merits of this proposal for support under our Regional Development Fund. This $200 million fund targets co-investment in infrastructure and industry projects which create economic step-changes for our regions.

“Unemployment in Manawatu/Whanganui has almost doubled under this National Government. But a Labour Government will back the Manawatu. There is a real buzz in Palmerston North about the potential to take this region forward.”

Labour’s MP for Palmerston North Iain Lees-Galloway says an inland port could be great news for the city.

“This is the kind of hope Palmerston North needs after being neglected by the National Government for the past six years. We will also be looking at food innovation projects. The Manawatu could be a leading high-value food incubator with backing from Government.”

The Labour Leader and Iain Lees-Galloway today visited Massey University and Food HQ.

David Cunliffe says Labour’s manufacturing upgrade and research and development tax credits would drive the regional growth Manawatu so desperately needs.

“We need a Government committed to backing regional centres to achieve their potential,” he says.