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National’s meaningless farm sales criteria

While John Key claimed to be tightening up overseas farm sales Bill English was quietly defining ‘large farms’ that would be subject to overseas investment restrictions as being ten times the size of an average farm, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says.

“Bill English issued a new ministerial directive to the OIO in December 2010 telling it to consider ‘large farms’, to be at least ten times the size of an average farm.

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Key should have, but hasn’t, called Israel’s ambassador in

Israel’s ambassador has confirmed he has not yet met with Murray McCully, nor formally with John Key, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says.

 “The Prime Minister said at a press conference yesterday that ‘on at least one occasion in the last couple of weeks we have formally called in the Israeli ambassador [Yosef Livne]’ to register the Government’s concerns about what is happening in Gaza.

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Science Challenges get a D minus

Steven Joyce’s $1.3 billion National Science Challenges have been handed a resounding fail grade from the country’s leading scientists, says Labour’s Innovation, Research and Development Spokesperson Megan Woods. 

A survey released today by the NZAS slammed the Minister’s flagship initiative. It showed overwhelming dissatisfaction with the whole process behind the National Science Challenges and little confidence in the Challenges ability to deliver. The scientists also believe that that this billion dollar plus investment over 10 years is not even aligned to science objectives.

 

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Small business success a priority for Labour

Small businesses with fewer than 20 staff will get a bigger bite of the procurement pie under a Labour Government, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.

“Too many small businesses are struggling in today’s tough economic environment. 

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Labour will keep Kiwi land in Kiwi hands

The next Labour Government will keep rural and residential land in Kiwi hands, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says.

“New Zealanders are sick of seeing their farms and homes sold to overseas buyers with the profits and opportunities going offshore. No overseas person has the right to buy our land.

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Health sector pushed to desperate measures

Industrial action being taken by DHB workers is a direct result of prolonged and chronic underfunding of the sector by National, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says.

"Labour has been warning of a blow-out for some time following increasing pressure being placed on our district health boards.

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Under 20s in work or training under Labour

A Labour Government will invest $183 million into a comprehensive package aimed at ensuring all New Zealanders under the age of 20 are in work or training by the end of our first term, Labour’s Employment, Skills and Training spokesperson Grant Robertson says. 

“There are 75,000 Kiwis aged 15 to 24 who are not in work, education or training. That’s 11 per cent of our young people; double the unemployment rate of the rest of the population.

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Carbon forestry in free fall

The National government’s refusal to restrict cheap international units under the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) has caused significant damage to the carbon forestry sector according to new figures released today says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Moana Mackey. 

"Only 0.3% of units surrendered under the ETS in 2013 were forestry units. This is just 141,253 units compared to the 5,325,191 surrendered in 2010.

 

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Sacrifices of World War One never forgotten

As we today mark 100 years since the beginning of World War One, we remember a time of grief and loss which defined New Zealand as a nation, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.

“The Great War broke and refashioned so many ideas of who we are. It hurled humanity into the modern era and gave birth to a new international age.

 

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Speech to the 69th Commemoration of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

As we gather on the eve of the 100 year anniversary of the commencement of World War 1, and we see conflicts in Gaza, Ukraine, Syria and the Central African Republic transported into our living rooms on a daily basis, it is worth reflecting on the causes and effects of war and the time it takes for people and countries to recover from even a limited, conventional weapons war. Generations are wiped out, countrysides littered with the enduring, indiscriminate evil of land mines, children traumatised and permanently damaged by malnutrition from broken food supply, artefacts of historical, cultural and religious significance ruined beyond restoration. People, places and societies, ruined for a long time.

 

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