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ETS to go ahead - Key

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
John Key. Pic: NZPA
John Key. Pic: NZPA

By Kate Chapman of NZPA

Wellington, April 7 NZPA - Prime Minister John Key today ruled out delaying the introduction of the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

Despite concerns from businesses the introduction was likely to go ahead in July, Mr Key told reporters.

The transport fuels, electricity production and industrial processes industries were scheduled to come under the ETS on July 1.

Business New Zealand chief executive Phil O'Reilly told the New Zealand Herald newspaper the Government had expected Australia to have their own ETS in place before the local one came into effect.

"We weren't delighted with the scheme but were comfortable with it based on those predictions. They're no longer there and really the Government needs to be rethinking the nature of the scheme and its impact."

Mr Key acknowledged that some businesses were concerned but said at this stage the Government intended to "continue as planned".

The ETS was being phased in "very slowly", he said.

"I do think it's important that New Zealand gets started in terms of dealing with climate change. If we had the previous Labour government scheme.... I'd be more concerned."

He confirmed he had received a letter from concerned parties.

Green Party co-leader Russel Norman today called on Mr Key to reaffirm his Government's commitment to the ETS schedule.

"Any hint of a back-down from our already weakened ETS undermines our credibility on this important international stage," he said.

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