New dodgy deal revealed in Cabinet paper

New information shows the Government did a second dubious deal with a disgruntled Saudi businessman who was blocking progress on the Gulf States Free Trade Agreement (FTA), says the Green Party today.

New information shows the Government did a second dubious deal with a disgruntled Saudi businessman who was blocking progress on the Gulf States Free Trade Agreement (FTA), says the Green Party today.

A Cabinet paper released today reveals the Government spent additional $4 million purchasing genetic development, logistical, supply chain and market connections from the Saudi businessman’s farm after he was annoyed about New Zealand stopping live sheep export for slaughter.

“It would seem taxpayers’ money was used to in a very questionable manner. It appears the Government is trying to buy off this businessman to get a deal,” said Green Party trade spokesperson James Shaw.

“Previous governments resisted caving into the demands of a foreign government and John Key should have resisted the temptation to buy international diplomacy.

“The National Government paid an over $4 million dollars, on top of the $7.5 million for the farm in the middle of the desert, to buy out the Saudi businessman’s interests in New Zealand; if that is not a dodgy deal, I don’t know what is.

“The Cabinet paper makes it very clear the Saudis wanted the businessman placated before they went further on the FTA. It was unethical of the Government to cave into pressure.

“New Zealanders don’t want us to bend and break rules, and pay off rich businessman to push through an unethical trade deal.                                                                     

“The Green Party wants full disclosure of the tender process for the farm and all other perks and benefits that the National Government gave out to try and secure a trade deal; which they have so far failed to do,” said Mr Shaw.

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