Greens, National find common ground

05:12, Apr 16 2009

National and the Greens are promising to work together to implement a nationwide home insulation programme and update New Zealand's energy efficiency strategy.

The parties will also work together on a New Zealand based regulatory system for natural health products - an issue which has divided Parliament in the past and been a thorn in the side of trans-Tasman relations.

The decision by the two parties to form a working relationship was announced today by Prime Minister John Key and Green Party  co-leaders Russel Norman and Jeanette Fitzsimons and marks a turning point for both.

The Green Party headed into the 2008 election saying it could not support a National government.

Mr Norman said the shared policy initiatives were the first to result from a new working relationship between National and the Greens.

The two parties signed a memorandum of understanding today to formalise the relationship.

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Dr Norman said it maintained the Green Party's independence while allowing both parties to work together on areas of common interest.

He said the details of today's agreement included:  

* Ms Fitzsimons will work with minister of Energy Gerry Brownlee on a home insulation fund to take effect by July this year. The programme will target private homes, either owned or rented.

*Green MP sue Kedgley will work with the Minister of Health Tony Ryall and Associate Minister Jonathan Coleman to develop a regulatory system specific to new Zealand, rather than the trans-Trasman model proposed by Labour.


The Dominion Post