01 August 2007
NEWS: NZ First 'proposal' doesn't make the grade
National today finally received New Zealand First's 'proposal' on the Trans-Tasman Therapeutic Goods legislation and it fails to make the grade, either with us, or the Australians, says National Party Leader John Key.
"The half-page proposal arrived late this morning. It raises with National considerable concerns that would need to be resolved before it would be acceptable.
"National's position has been clear since 2003 – it wants to see complementary medicines carved out of the legislation. If that is done, we will support it.
"The New Zealand First proposal has major holes, not least of which is the fact that it leaves open the possibility of shifting a domestic regulatory regime to the joint agency at some unspecified date - presumably without an act of Parliament.
"The Australian High Commissioner today informed me that the New Zealand First proposal would be unacceptable to the Australians as well.
"On that basis, the Winston Peters option was never a live option – and the Labour Government and Annette King must have known that, but decided to play along with it anyway.
"The Labour Government and Annette King have bungled and obfuscated over this whole issue, while National has been consistent.
"National is not going to sign up to legislation like this unless it meets our position – and the New Zealand First proposal falls short.
"What we got today from New Zealand First comes nowhere near resembling a Supplementary Order Paper. Apparently New Zealand First sent its half page to Annette King with the expectation that she would get it drafted into an SOP. But it's clear that never happened."Tweet
01 August 2007
NEWS: National's position on therapeutic goods unchanged
The National Party's position on the trans-Tasman Therapeutic Goods regime is the same today as it has been since the proposal was first examined by a select committee in 2003, says National Party Leader John Key.
"If the Government removes the complementary medicines from the legislation, then we will support it. If they don't, we won't.
"That has been our position since 2003 and continues to be our position.
"I have personally explained our position to Australian Prime Minister John Howard, Foreign Minister Alexander Downer, and High Commissioner John Dauth. I have also explained it to Helen Clark and Michael Cullen.
"Today's NZ Herald story misrepresents our position. The story correctly quotes me as saying 'If they came to us now with that proposal, we will sign it.'
"I was, of course, referring to the Trans-Tasman Therapeutic Goods regime - not the proposal put up by NZ First. I repeatedly made that clear to the NZ Herald yesterday.
"National has never received a copy of the NZ First proposal, to the best of our knowledge.
"Our position is simple: If complementary medicines are removed from the regime, National will support it.
"We have stated our position in thousands of letters and emails to concerned New Zealanders, to Government ministers verbally on many occasions, and in:
• The National Party's minority report on the select committee inquiry, 18 June 2004.
• A letter from former National Party Leader Don Brash to the Prime Minister, on 7 July 2004.
• A letter from Murray McCully and Tony Ryall to Phil Goff and Annette King, on 30 June 2006.
• A letter from Tony Ryall to Health Minister Annette King, on 12 September 2006.
"If we are presented with a proposal from the Government that meets our position, we will support it. If the Government doesn't, then we won't."Tweet