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Ardern: Abbott's attitude 'not good enough'

Monday 10 Feb 2014 11:55 a.m.

The opposition says Prime Minister John Key has come back empty handed from his recent trans-Tasman talks.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott is refusing to intervene in a Buy Australia campaign that has seen Kiwi products banned from Aussie supermarkets.

"We did need to come away with more, in fact the Prime Minister, all he announced was actually something that was announced back in mid last year around student loans," Labour MP Jacinda Ardern told Firstline this morning.

"We needed much more than that, particularly in the wake of our exporters facing virtually being banned from some major supermarket chains in Australia and for the Australian Prime Minister to just sit back and say 'well nothing to do with me' - that's just quite frankly not good enough."

But National MP Jami-Lee Ross says New Zealand's relationship with Australia is fine, and beneficial to Kiwi businesses.

"We did take a lot away from this, maybe it hasn't been reported as much as it deserves, but there has been a lot of benefits come out of this relationship," he says.

"What I'd say about the Australian relationship we have at the moment is we've just been invited to the G20 summit and that's a really big thing for New Zealand."

Mr Ross says the B20 summit will be on at the same time as the G20, which is "huge" for New Zealand businesses.

However, Ms Ardern says the country needs action.

"We've got grounds to argue that what's happening in Australia is a breach of the CER."

Ms Ardern believes New Zealand should fight back with our own country of origin labelling.

"If New Zealanders want to respond in the same way as Australians, we can do that. At the moment our consumers can't, but maybe it's time to fight back."

Watch the video to see the full interview.

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