Government curbs irrigations investment decision

Rural Exchange 15/04/2018

Last week, Finance Minister Grant Robertson announced that the Government would stop funding the Hurunui, Hunter Downs and Flaxbourne irrigation projects.

The funding had previously come through Crown Irrigation Investments Ltd as part of its Confidence and Supply Agreement with the Green Party.

This decision has upset many in the rural sector, with the Chief Executive of Irrigation NZ Andrew Curtis calling it an opportunity lost in terms of regional economy and potential growth.

Mr Curtis says he isn't surprised by the decision but is disappointed with the way it was handled.

"There are not many people who seem to have been spoken to around it all," he said.

Mr Curtis also says he is confused by some of the decisions too because some of the areas are prone to drought.

Hunter Downs and Hurunui have some of the toughest environmental requirements in the country, and the irrigation projects would have provided stability there.

Watch the full interview with Andrew Curtis above.

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