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We Need Less Lawyers And More Property People

We Need Less Lawyers And More Property People


Friday 31 May 2002


The New Zealand Property Institute said that figures reported today showing that New Zealand has more lawyers per capita than any other country except the United States and Canada was not good for the country. There are now 8612 lawyers holding practicing certificates, up from 2794 in 1971. We now have one lawyer for every 468 people in the country, up from 1:787 in 1950 and a total of 8612.

Property Institute CEO, Conor English said," Lets be straight forward about this. This is not good.

"Lawyers do perform an important role and are useful, but we need more balance. If we are to grow our economy and raise our living standards, we need a better balance with fewer lawyers and more property people. New Zealand has a property asset base of over $400 billion, which drives our $105 billion GDP. Increasing the performance and growth of that asset is critical to our success as a nation.

"We need intellectual capital and emotional intelligence that helps make the economy grow. What we need are more wealth creators. We need more people who add value to the collective national economic pie. There are a wide range of people involved in property who do this.

Mr English said that parents and school teachers have an important role to play. "The education and career decisions young New Zealanders make are influenced by their parents and also their teachers. They need to encourage our youngsters to examine a broader range of options.

"A career in the property sector can be very satisfying and financially rewarding. A recent survey done by the New Zealand Property Institute of its members showed that 60% earn over $60,000 per year. This compares very well nationally as only about 8% of all New Zealanders earn over $60,000.

"In New Zealand, Lincoln, Massey, and Auckland Universities provide excellent degrees in Property. Frankly, if we are to get a better balance, our young need to be encouraged into these courses, rather than all been encouraged into doing law degrees," Mr English concluded.


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