NZ First pledges to re­lo­cate port fur­ther north

Central Leader - - OUT & ABOUT - BRAD FLAHIVE AND ADAM JA­COB­SON

Auck­land mayor Phil Goff sup­ports Win­ston Peters’ pro­posal to re­lo­cate the Ports of Auck­land.

The NZ First elec­tion prom­ise has also been wel­comed by lo­cal iwi Ngati Whatua Orakei, which of­fered fi­nan­cial sup­port for the port’s re­lo­ca­tion should the prom­ise come into ac­tion.

Peters is vow­ing to shift con­tainer op­er­a­tions from Auck­land to North­land should his party come into a po­si­tion of in­flu­ence af­ter the elec­tion.

Peters said his party’s ’’cast iron com­mit­ment’’ would see op­er­a­tions move to North­port at Mars­den Point near Whangarei by the end of 2027.

Goff said he was in favour of re­lo­cat­ing the Ports of Auck­land.

‘‘I think most Auck­lan­ders are, but they also be­lieve there should still be a port in Auck­land,’’ Goff said.

A re­lo­ca­tion de­ci­sion would not be made with­out Auck­land Council’s in­put on be­half of rate pay­ers, he said.

A busi­ness case which stacked up both eco­nom­i­cally and en­vi­ron­men­tally would also be re­quired, he said.

Ngati Whatua Orakei spokesper­son Ngarimu Blair re­it­er­ated the iwi’s sup­port for mov­ing the Port of Auck­land.

Repo­si­tion­ing the port fur­ther north would lead to an ‘‘eco­nomic re­nais­sance’’ in the area, he said.

CHRIS MCKEEN/FAIR­FAX NZ

Ports of Auck­land is val­ued at $1.1 bil­lion and is owned by Auck­land Council.

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