Streamlining compliance essential for competition

National supports the recommendations in the final Commerce Commission report into building materials, National’s Building and Construction spokesperson Andrew Bayly says.

“The final report concluded that the sector was not working for competition with the main hurdles in constraints to market entry and expansion.

“New Zealand’s regulatory system must streamline the compliance process for new products that meet international standards.

“To improve competition we should make it as easy as possible for building materials and product systems that meet international standards equivalent to those of New Zealand to be approved here.

“I am glad the Commission recognised this fundamental problem. My Member’s Bill, Building (Plasterboard Alternatives) Amendment Bill would have allowed more innovative products and systems into the sector. 

“Right now, it is too difficult for offshore manufacturers and suppliers to gain approval to introduce new products into the New Zealand market – it takes too long and is too costly. This is a major barrier to entry.

“Restrictive covenants and rebates schemes have favoured incumbent industry players.

“We need to ensure greater visibility on merchant rebates which has discouraged retailers from using alternative products provided by different suppliers.

“National is also supportive of offsite manufacturing and allowing Iwi to more easily consent housing on Iwi land.

“To achieve meaningful reforms, National seeks innovation and ultimately, a wider range of building products that Kiwi developers can access when building new dwellings.

“The recommendations of the Commerce Commission will be helpful in making the sector more competitive and building materials more affordable.”