Quality products and New Zealand interests should be protected

The temporary suspension of anti-dumping duties, beginning July 1, on residential building materials made offshore cannot be an excuse to allow substandard products into New Zealand, says Labour Associate spokesperson for Building and Construction Raymond Huo.

“National has failed to get a grip on the housing crisis. What’s worse, it has failed to address product warranties in its building law review.

“Manufacturers of building materials must be made accountable for the quality of their products.

“The leaky home crisis was blamed on inadequate checking by local authorities, poor building standards and defective materials like wall cladding.

“We simply cannot risk another catastrophe due to substandard building materials.

“Nor can we ignore the implications for competition between local and foreign product manufacturers.

“Concerned stakeholders have told me that this move will give foreign manufacturers a competitive advantage, which will almost inevitably result in prices for foreign products being lower than prices for New Zealand-made.

“Although our laws may capture foreign manufacturers, it will be significantly harder for people to seek and obtain relief against those entities than against local producers.

“This reinforces the need for the strict enforcement of high quality standards for products and materials.

“The temporary suspension of anti-dumping duties will not help ease the housing crisis, but it could potentially put industry and consumers at risk.

“Is that a message this National Government wants to send to consumers, local manufacturers or the building industry?”