Jacinda Ardern defends ban on live animal exports by sea

Author
The Country,
Publish Date
Wed, 14 Apr 2021, 3:02PM
(Photo / NZ Herald)

Jacinda Ardern defends ban on live animal exports by sea

Author
The Country,
Publish Date
Wed, 14 Apr 2021, 3:02PM

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has defended the Government's plan to ban live animal exports by sea. 

The Government announced today the practice will cease after a transition period of up to two years.

Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor acknowledges the economic benefit some farmers get from the trade - but says support of it is not universal within the sector.

He says officials have spoken to key trading partners about the decision.

Live exports by sea have made up about 0.2 percent of our primary exports revenue since 2015.

Speaking to The Country's Jamie Mackay, Ardern denied it was a 'sop to the Greens'. 

"These are not easy decisions, but since we had the tragic issue of a ship that was part of live exports out of New Zealand sinking, that has caused us just to reflect." 

She says it was not the only factor, as it has been a debate for a long time. Ardern echoed O'Connor's statement that there are different views within the sector.

She says it is not about the destination at all, and is completely neutral of that. 

"For us, it's about whether the act itself - and it is very much the act itself rather than the destination or what happens to the livestock upon arrival."

Listen above as Jacinda Ardern also discusses whether MPs should knit in Parliament - and her thoughts on the National leadership coup rumours