Thursday, 26 October
$1B Regional Fund Needs Coherent Vision
Maxim Institute welcomes investment in New Zealand’s regions, but CEO Alex Penk cautions that we urgently need more
detail on how the new Government plans to spend this money.
“Simply spending money will not bring lasting growth. Our Growing Beyond Growth
report, released earlier this year, warned that regional development spending needs to be based on solid evidence about
what works, in order to bring long-term growth,” says Alex Penk. “It is important before money is handed out that the
Government works together with local government and stakeholders to offer a coherent, evidence-backed vision for what
kind of regional development they believe will produce results over the long term.”
“Without a detailed plan, it’s open season for lobbyists. There’s also a risk of wastage and politically motivated
spending. Our report showed that New Zealand’s regions are facing significant demographic and economic challenges over
the next 30 years, so the use of this one-billion-dollar fund needs to have clear, transparent, and prioritised goals
that explain the reasoning and expectations behind the new Government’s decisions,” says Alex.