With less than 24 hours to go before the budget Bill English has shown he’s not on top of the numbers, making an embarrassing error on manufacturing figures, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker.
“Manufacturing is in serious trouble in this country, especially non-primary manufactured exports. That’s why we are holding a Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing to support the sector.
“Someone should tell Bill English the facts because he clearly doesn’t know. He said today in Parliament – in his prepared response to the primary question – that in the December quarter ‘manufacturing showed growth’.
“He was wrong. According to Statistics New Zealand ‘Manufacturing activity decreased 0.5 per cent, after a 0.6 per cent fall in the September 2012 quarter’.
“The problems in the manufacturing sector are contributing to our $10 billion current account deficit which is the worst in the developed world, and will remain so for the next five years.
“How on earth can Bill English be expected to solve this major issue for our economy when he gets the basics wrong?
“It is no wonder the Government is failing to rebalance the economy and this budget will do little to help,” says David Parker.
15th may 2013 Media Statement