02 October 2007
VIDEO: Foreign policy discussion document launch

02 October. John begins this (17 minute and sometimes slow-loading) video with a snippet from his launch statement to the press. Following that, Foreign Affairs Spokesman, Hon Murry McCully, walks the audience through the document, which is available on the National website in the Discussion Document section. Following Murray's presentation, the video returns to the press Q&A with John, dealing intitially with questions about the paper and moving on into questions of a more general nature.
News release

02 October 2007
NEWS: National to put New Zealand's interests first

National intends putting the best interests of New Zealand first in its foreign affairs, defence, and trade policy, says National Party Leader John Key.

Mr Key today released National's foreign affairs, defence, and trade discussion paper, entitled 'Focusing on our Core Strengths and Capabilities'.  It signposts where National wants to take its policy.

"We have already signalled our intentions in some areas.  For example, there will be no change to the anti-nuclear legislation.

"National believes that after three decades of debate, the basis for an enduring consensus in foreign affairs, defence, and trade has arisen. This has been helped by Labour adopting more mainstream positions on foreign policy.

"Two ideas underpin the proposals in the paper - New Zealand must concentrate on its essential interests in these areas, and we must focus more than ever on our core strengths and capabilities.

"New Zealand is a small, isolated and trade-dependent country.  We depend on consistent and effective foreign policy.

"There is now broad, bipartisan agreement on foreign policy that reflects New Zealand's more independent assessment of its external environment.

"In defence, the old debates are over, and there is agreement on the need for highly effective – if necessarily small – defence forces to help maintain security both close to home in the Pacific and further afield in the world.

"In trade, there is already broad consensus on the importance of free and open trade, although National wants to put more emphasis on the importance of boosting our exports, and there are proposals in the paper on that.

"Ultimately, foreign policy is about what is in the best interests of the country.  Those interests are at the forefront of our thinking in this paper."

View and download the paper and supporting documents, here.