INDEPENDENT NEWS

Labour's Arrogance Beyond Contempt

Published: Tue 9 Dec 2003 02:49 PM
Labour's Arrogance Beyond Contempt
Tuesday 9 Dec 2003 Heather Roy Press Releases -- Health
ACT New Zealand Health Spokesman Heather Roy today labelled Labour arrogant, for announcing the imminent signing of the trans-Tasman agency agreement to regulate dietary supplements and complementary healthcare products before the Health Select Committee Inquiry was reported back to Parliament.
"By doing so, the Government is completely ignoring 15 months work by the committee, as well as huge input from the industry, worth around $2 million a year," Mrs Roy said.
"Despite these products being very low risk, they will become heavily regulated. As a result, prices will rise, and innovation and new product development will be impossible for the many small players in the market now.
"Only larger companies - with large research and development budgets - will be able to afford to pay the increased compliance costs that will inevitably arise.
"Most submitters agreed there should be regulation within the industry, and were willing to look at various options. Some made proposals of their own, but this anti-business Government has shunned this work.
"Labour's minds were made up long ago. The Government has shown its contempt for the complementary healthcare industry - despite giving the impression it was willing to listen. Health Minister Annette King has shown her utter contempt for the Select Committee process, and criticised the Health Committee for taking too long to produce the report.
"The truth is, however, that while the committee was dealing with her legislation - the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Bill and the Cervical Screening Bill - before the inquiry, as it is obliged to do, she was working away behind the scenes to present a fait accompli. It seems she never had any intention of taking notice of the industry, or the inquiry findings," Mrs Roy said.
ENDS
For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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