With New Zealanders bombarded with negative economic indicators this week, it’s time for the Government to get its head out of the sand, recognise the damage it’s doing and focus on turning things around, National’s Finance spokesperson Amy Adams says.
“In one of the worst weeks of economic news in a decade we’re seeing unemployment rising, firms going bust, job creation going down, vast chunks of the workforce striking and business confidence plummeting to levels not seen in 10 years.
“Economists are now predicting New Zealand’s economic growth could drop to as low as 1.5 per cent at the same time the world economy is forecast to grow at around 3.9 per cent in the coming year.
“This matters to New Zealanders. Every lost 1 per cent of GDP means $800 million less revenue for government.
“When the economy is growing wages and jobs increase, we can build infrastructure like schools and hospitals and invest more in better public services. When it’s not we can’t without borrowing more or raising taxes.
“Yet still the Government refuses to acknowledge the real impact it is having through negative and anti-growth policies like raising taxes, restricting foreign investment and making bad decisions like axing oil and gas exploration without consultation.
“With a chorus of experts calling for a correction it’s time for the Government to face the facts, recognise it’s got things wrong and change course.
“Finance Minister Grant Robertson must explain what his plan is and how he will fund his billions of dollars in extra spending without borrowing more. Will he stick to his promise not to lift borrowing even more than he already has or will he start further ramping up costs on New Zealanders?
“New Zealanders deserve better than a Government with its head in the sand and no idea how to right its course.”