Media release 24 May 2001
Mixed prospects for employment from Budget
Prospects for employment arising from today's Budget are mixed, says Business NZ Executive Director Anne Knowles.
"An absence of detail with regard to paid parental leave is disappointing. While the business sector is relieved that it
will not bear the full burden of the policy, there is likely to be disquiet at the lack of information on what the
Government is actually planning.
"The extra million dollars for the Mediation Service is helpful. Any industrial action that can be defused by this
service is welcome.
"Any suggestion that labour standards should somehow be incorporated into trade agreements is not a positive move. There
are already ILO mechanisms to provide necessary redress if required. The move does not help New Zealand's
competitiveness, but instead fosters a protectionist approach which could damage our trade prospects.
"The general environment for employment gains from some measures, but loses from others. While fiscal management,
economic development and education measures will help our growth prospects, others will not help us improve our capital
base or competitive position versus the rest of the world."
Contact Anne Knowles 021 425868 or Kathryn Asare 021 555744