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Jacinda Ardern says she doesn’t see Ports of Auckland's future as ‘necessarily being political’


A final working group report has suggested Auckland's current port operations be moved to Northland, with calls for the Government to introduce new legislation to make it happen.

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The Prime Minister spoke with TVNZ1’s Breakfast on the port’s potential move to Northland. Source: Breakfast

But Jacinda Ardern told TVNZ1's Breakfast she thinks its a discussion for everyone. 

"I don’t think the debate is new or limited to one particular, you know, group,"  the Prime Minister said. 

"I don’t see this discussion as necessarily being political." 

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Michael Barnett says the independent report on the matter was influenced by politics. Source: Breakfast

The report details how the freight operation at Ports of Auckland is no longer economically or environmentally viable. 

If it goes ahead, it will be the largest infrastructure project in New Zealand history, costing $10 billion.

"It is a massive infrastructure project though, we don't take it lightly. 

"It needs to be well considered and that's why I look forward to seeing the report."

Along with a massive road upgrade, a new 18-kilometre rail line would be built to connect Northport to the main trunk line between Auckland and Northland.

Northwest of Auckland, a new freight distribution terminal would be built, and a new stretch of line would run through West Auckland, so no big freights trains need to come into the CBD.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff wanted compensation if the port moves, but 1 NEWS understands the final report says the development potential of 77 hectares of prime waterfront land is compensation enough.

Ministers Shane Jones, Phil Twyford and Grant Robertson were approached by 1 NEWS for comment yesterday.

However, as they only received the report at the weekend, they declined to comment.