Prime Minister in denial on the economy

Published: Tue 13 Aug 2019 09:04 AM
The latest attempt by the Prime Minister to lay all of the blame for our country’s economic slowdown on global factors shows she is in denial about the effects of her Government’s inept economic management, National’s Finance Spokesperson Paul Goldsmith says.
“Jacinda Ardern’s weekly interview on Newstalk ZB put on display her Government’s spin, which is to blame everyone else for the material slowdown in the New Zealand economy.
“Of course there is some global uncertainty out there, but it doesn’t explain New Zealand’s economic slowdown.
“The IMF expects global growth to increase from 3.2 per cent this year to 3.5 per cent next year. And our terms of trade, which reflects the prices we receive for our exports relative to the prices we pay for our imports, is near historical highs. New Zealand should be booming.
“Instead, we’re in danger of stalling. In just three months since the Reserve Bank’s last Monetary Policy Statement it has revised down its growth forecast for 2020 by half a per cent. That’s equivalent to about $1.5 billion of economic activity, lost to New Zealand in just three months.
“The primary causes of the New Zealand economic slowdown are closer to home, much of it can be sheeted home to her Government’s bad economic management.
“Business confidence has plummeted to depths not seen since the Global Finance Crisis and business investment has fallen from 5 per cent a year under National to just 0.6 per cent under Labour.
“Business confidence has fallen because the Government keeps adding costs to businesses, it has created massive uncertainty with all its working groups and left-field decisions like the ban on new oil and gas exploration, and because it has demonstrated incompetence, most famously with KiwiBuild.
“National will deliver a strong economy by ensuring hardworking New Zealanders are able to keep more of what they earn, reducing costs and compliance for businesses, investing in the infrastructure our country desperately needs, including the roads the Government have cancelled for purely ideological reasons, and investing in core public services like health and education.
“National will restore confidence and revive our economy so that we can lift our aspirations, both in what we can earn and in what social challenges we can overcome.”

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