Latest GDP figures show New Zealand’s GDP per person growth rate has fallen behind Australia for the first time in six years, National’s Finance spokesperson Amy Adams says.

“On a per person basis, New Zealander’s incomes rose by only 0.6 per cent in the last year, compared to 0.9 per cent in Australia, according to the latest Statistics New Zealand figures and that’s a concern.

“All of Finance Minister Grant Robertson’s claims of the beginnings of an economic ‘transformation’ can’t hide the fact that until now, New Zealand’s GDP per capita had outperformed Australia every single quarter since we worked our way out of the financial crisis in 2012.

“The sharp decline shows New Zealand has fallen behind our closest international counterpart on a per person basis.

“The last time New Zealand’s GDP per person growth rate fell below 1 per cent was back in 2011 when we were coming out of a global financial crisis.

“Unfortunately for Mr Robertson and this Government, they don’t have that excuse this time around. In fact, they largely have themselves to blame.

“These latest findings show that the falling business confidence that has occurred under this Government as a result of its bad decisions, working groups, uncertainty and lack of leadership is having real and tangible effects.

“Maintaining economic growth must not be taken for granted. Unfortunately for New Zealanders, Mr Robertson and his colleagues continue to prove they’re just not up to it.”

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