Labour won’t abandon regional New Zealand

Labour will ensure no regions in New Zealand are ‘red-zoned’ by tailoring Regional Growth Plans for each province as part of our Economic Upgrade, Labour’s Finance spokesperson and Deputy Leader David Parker says.
“The Royal Society of New Zealand’s Our Future report highlights the hollowing out of our regions under National, a trend that Labour has long warned of.
“That trend has become reality. A number of experts such as the NZIER, the Royal Society and Infometrics have warned that things have become so bad some communities may be abandoned.
New Zealanders have tremendous pride in their towns and regions. It is insulting to them and their forbears that they have been abandoned over the past 6 years by National’s management of the economy.
“Labour won’t abandon the regions – we will help them to succeed. Labour’s policies will support industry and boost growth to create jobs and opportunities in the provinces.
“We will work alongside businesses, communities and local government to tailor Regional Growth Plans to each province, as called for by experts such as Shamubeel Eaqub. Labour will announce further regional development plans next week.
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Government has no solutions to tackle risks to economy

The National Government has no solutions to tackle the serious risks to the economy identified by the Reserve Bank today, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says.
“Reserve Bank Governor Graeme Wheeler this morning highlighted falling dairy prices, declining log exports, strong immigration and high house price inflation as factors threatening the economic recovery. The Governor also noted that the exchange rate was at an unsustainable level.
“The quarter-point rise in the Official Cash Rate to 3.25 per cent means mortgage interest rates are well on their way towards 9 per cent.
“These pressures will add to the increasing cost of living. Kiwis know times are tough when 46 per cent of working New Zealanders have had no increase in their wage rate in the past year.
“National’s tool box is empty.
“Conversely, Labour has ideas to curb all these risks.
“Interest rates are going up because house prices are out of control in Auckland. Continue reading

More job cuts, monetary policy upgrade needed

The loss of 70 jobs at Alloy Yachts shows the pain being inflicted on exporters by the high New Zealand dollar and the need for an upgrade of our out-of-date Reserve Bank Act, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker.

“Our overvalued New Zealand dollar is having a huge impact on manufacturers, especially those like yacht-building that rely almost wholly on exporting. In January Fitzroy Yachts in New Plymouth said it would have to close down. Now Alloy Yachts is slashing its workforce.

“It is a heartbreaking time for the families of those workers who often have to leave the region or go overseas to find jobs; all because our dollar is overvalued, by up to 15 per cent, according to the IMF.
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More manufacturers closing than opening

The manufacturing sector is struggling under National as new figures show manufacturing company closures have outnumbered start-ups for the fifth year in a row, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker.

“The new Business Demography statistics show that the number of manufacturing start-ups has dropped by a quarter in five years, from over 2000 in 2008 to 1451 in 2013 – the lowest number since this series began.

“Manufacturing closures outnumbered start-ups by more than 300 this year. Manufacturing exports have fallen 10 per cent in real terms in the last year and 19 per cent in real terms since 2008.

“Respected international manufacturing economist Goran Roos will be speaking on these issues this weekend.
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National must listen to copper tax campaign

National must listen to copper tax campaign

National must listen to the widespread opposition to Amy Adams’ ‘copper tax’ that will give $600 million to shareholders in Chorus at the cost of New Zealanders’ broadband bills, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker and Communications and IT spokesperson Clare Curran said.

“National’s copper tax on broadband is yet another blow to Kiwi families and our economy. It adds another $150 a year to bills, for which they get nothing extra,” says Clare Curran.

“This is wrong for consumers and holds back the New Zealand economy. That’s why the ‘Axe the Copper Tax’ campaign has started. Labour has been against this interference from the beginning. The Government has been completely out of touch.
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Grey Power deal shows need for NZ Power

Pulse Energy’s deal with Grey Power for discounts for its members shows why New Zealand needs Labour’s policy to bring down power prices, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says.

“The agreement between Pulse and Grey Power for low cost power for senior citizens shows the electricity industry recognises that prices are too high for many New Zealanders.

“Some senior citizens are forced to limit their use of appliances such as heaters during winter because power prices are higher than they should be. This is a tragedy which puts their health at risk.
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