'We can't just sit there and wait' - Government considering fund to stay ahead of biosecurity risks

The government are considering the creation of a fund to hit the increasing number of biosecurity risks before they take hold. 

Corin Dann interviews the Finance Minister Grant Robertson three days after he delivered his first budget. Source: Q+A

Today TVNZ1's Corin Dann spoke to Finance Minister Grant Robertson about his first Budget, delivered on Thursday, and discussed money set aside to deal with threats to the country. 

Mr Robertson said he is considering a fund to get ahead of the increasing number of biosecurity issues like the bacterial infection to cattle, Mycoplasma bovis, in New Zealand. 

He told Mr Dann he has asked Treasury and the Ministry of Primary Industries to investigate the possibility of creating a fund that could be funded partly by the government and partly by industry.

"We can't just sit there and wait for these things to happen. We know they're happening more regularly and I want us to get ahead of that," he said.

“We are in a very reactive stance when they come in. We have this with Mycoplasma bovis, and we scramble around both as a government and the industry, trying to find the money to respond to them."

"What I'd like to see is for us to get ahead of those."