Primary Sector Growth Plan

National backs farmers. When farming is strong, New Zealand is strong.

New Zealand’s economy depends on primary production. Last year, the primary sector contributed more than three-quarters of all goods exports, underpinning the standard of living of every New Zealander.

Right now, the economy is struggling. The cost-of-living continues to rise faster than wages. New Zealand has the largest current account deficit in the OECD.

For six years, Labour has relentlessly loaded rules onto the primary sector. Farmers and growers are immensely frustrated by over-bearing regulation that is holding back higher productivity and investment and does not protect the environment.

New Zealand needs a strong and growing primary sector to help rebuild the economy and get it working for all New Zealanders. Achieving this will require regulation that is simple, clear, and targets outcomes.

National’s Primary Sector Growth Plan will:

  • Eliminate resource consents to build water storage infrastructure on land, unless wetlands or Significant Natural Areas are affected.
  • For other types of water storage, require councils to approve or decline consents within two years, and consents will last for 30 years.
  • Make commercially-grown fruit and vegetables a permitted activity under the Resource Management Act. In most cases, growers will not have to obtain a resource consent to grow more food.
  • Increase maximum penalties for breaching border biosecurity rules, to protect our primary industries.

The Primary Sector Growth Plan also eliminates resources consents to establish wetlands. Wetlands provide a range of environmental benefits, such as preventing sediment going into waterways, carbon capture and increased biodiversity. Yet landowners are having to spend thousands of dollars on consents for new wetlands.

National will take practical, common sense steps to help the primary sector grow the economy and get our country back on track.

Read National’s Primary Sector Growth Plan here