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PM's Package Must Be Credible

10 February 2002

Business will be looking for substance and credibility in the Prime Minister's package on Tuesday, says Business NZ Chief Executive Simon Carlaw.

Mr Carlaw says while the Prime Minister's reported focus on innovation may be attractive in itself it could not replace policies that gave all NZ businesses clear signals that growth right across the board was now the Government's objective.

"Confidence has been shaken by policies that are increasing the risk and costs of operating let alone growing a business," Mr Carlaw said.

"Many small businesses in particular are finding that compliance costs, taxes, environment policies and employment law proposals will significantly increase their costs and cut their ability to grow jobs.

"Business just wants Government to get the basics right.

"There's a danger of concepts like innovation being over-hyped to obscure policy that will not foster growth. Kyoto implementation for example would damage the economy more than any innovation package could ever remedy.

"Business NZ will be assessing the Prime Minister's proposals against its scorecard of 20 key growth policies (see Changing Gear on www.businessnz.org.nz ).

"In particular it will be interesting to learn whether new fuel or health taxes, or policies already deferred until after the election, rate a mention."

Ends


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