7 May 2015

Cut dollar's value to help farmers - Peters

7:15 am on 7 May 2015

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters is calling on the Government to do more to help the country's dairy farmers.

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters giving his opening speech for 2015.

Winston Peters - pictured speaking in Parliament in early 2015. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

Global dairy prices are at five-year lows and Mr Peters said a generation of dairy farmers was at risk.

Mr Peters said dairy prices had fallen more than 40 percent since the start of the season and said the Government needed to take the pressure off farmers.

"The Government could get off its backside and change the Reserve Bank Act and make sure the dollar is reflecting its true value rather than the highly inflated dollar it is now, as the International Monetary Fund has said, and it would start helping farmers," he said.

"It would stop this severe damage against farming and agricultural and export interests and give them a help-up.

"That's the point here, they've got the tools to do something about it - they just won't do it."

Mr Peters said New Zealand should also use its seat on the United Nations Security Council to try to resolve the Russian-Ukraine conflict, which he said had led to a glut of milk in international markets.

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