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Water ownership a no brainer - Key

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New Zealand News | Tuesday February 7 2012 12:22

Water ownership a no brainer - Key

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The Maori Council is today planning to lay a case with the Waitangi Tribunal to halt the partial sale of the big energy companies, at least until the water rights ownership is sorted out.

But Prime Minister John Key says in his view the ownership of water's a no brainer.

"No one owns water. It's like air, no one owns the air," he says.

"People have allocation rights in relation to the use of water and in the case of some of these companies they are very well documented.

"Meridian's just been going through some of the renewals of its 30 year water rights."

Meanwhile there's a refusal from Labour leader David Shearer to say who owns water rights - saying that decision will now be up to the courts.

Mr Shearer says the Government has got itself into this mess.

He says it's up to the courts to decide how the situation goes forward, but the key point is the Government has brought itself trouble by pushing ahead with asset sales when there's so much opposition to it.

Photo: The Benmore Dam (NZ Herald)

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