While some regional New Zealanders may share Mr Jones’ frustration with air services, Shane Jones is going too far indulging in personal attacks on business leaders, National Party Economic Development Spokesman Paul Goldsmith says.

“Attacking public companies is a strange approach to economic development,” Mr Goldsmith says.

“It is up to Air New Zealand to defend its record in regional New Zealand, and it’s perfectly appropriate for politicians to raise questions of performance, as my colleague Nathan Guy has done.

“What’s not acceptable is a style of politics based on attacks on businesses and their leaders.

“Mr Jones made his name in opposition attacking Countdown. Now he is attacking Air New Zealand. Next he’ll move on to banks and other companies. It’s nothing but economic vandalism for political gain.

“While this may give Mr Jones the attention he craves, this style of politics undermines business confidence and investment that improves the services to the public he says he’s concerned about.

“If he genuinely cares about economic development he’ll get some discipline and engage constructively with businesses – businesses who employ thousands of hard-working Kiwis.”

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