Joseph Gordon Coates

(1878—1943) prime minister of New Zealand

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New Zealand statesman. He represented the interests of the rural poor, including the Maori. Though he was a member of the conservative Reform Party, he advanced the New Zealand tradition of state action for the public good, developing roads and railways, the state hydroelectricity programme, afforestation, and aiding Maori farming schemes. In coalition with Forbes during the Depression he broke the authority of the private banks, established the Reserve Bank, and laid the foundation for economic recovery.

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945).

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