Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


ECA: Nine years of instability

Media Statement

15 May 2000

ECA: Nine years of instability

The Employment Contracts Act, which came into effect nine years ago today, has played a key part in New Zealand's poor international competitiveness, and increased rates of under-employment and joblessness through the 1990s, says Labour Minister Margaret Wilson.

"The ECA, along with the last Government's broader economic policy, has divided New Zealand into clasess of 'haves' and 'have-nots'. It has rent a chasm between workers and employers and has hindered New Zealand's ability to compete with other modern economies," says Ms Wilson.

"Under the ECA the number of jobless rose by 26 percent (175,900 in December 1990 to 222,200 in December 1999). The number of people in part-time work seeking more hours has trebled to 148,600 compared with 48,800 in December 1990.

"In a scale of international competitiveness produced by the International Institute of Management Development in Switzerland, New Zealand dropped from 11th place in 1996 to 21st this year.

"Increased casualisation of the workforce and trends towards more contracting out of work has left many workers in very uncertain employment.

"According to Reserve Bank estimates, New Zealand's annual growth in Labour productivity averaged a mere 0.36% between 1991 and 1999.

"All this is in contrast to the extravagant claims made by former Labour Minister Bill Birch when he introduced the ECA promising increased growth and prosperity and, later on, a more cohesive society.

"The ECA has been a calamity for many New Zealanders.

"No one should be surprised that thousands of submissions have poured into the office of the Employment Select Committee offices supporting the introduction of a more balanced and forward-looking regime under the Employment Relations Bill," says Ms Wilson.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

There Is A Field: Reimagining Biodiversity In Aotearoa

We are in a moment of existential peril, with interconnected climate and biodiversity crises converging on a global scale to drive most life on Earth to the brink of extinction. However, our current worldview and political paradigm renders us incapable of responding adequately due to its disconnected and divisive default settings.

These massive challenges can, however, be reframed as a once in a lifetime opportunity to fundamentally change how humanity relates to nature and to each other. Read on The Dig>>

The Dig: Scoop’s Engaged Journalism Platform Launches
The Scoop Ecosystem has grown bigger with the launch of The Dig - a new public interest, in-depth, Engaged Journalism platform. More>>


Unscoped Or Missed Damage: Resolution For Canterbury Owners Of On-Sold Homes

People with over-cap on-sold* properties in Canterbury can now apply for a Government payment so they can get on and repair their homes. More>>


Hamilton-Auckland: First Urban Growth Partnership Signed

New Zealand’s first urban growth partnership between the Government, local councils and mana whenua was signed at a meeting of mayors, chairs and ministers in Hampton Downs today. More>>


Vote On Action Next Week: Secondary Principals Walk From Negotiations

“Unfortunately we consider there is no further value in continuing negotiations at this point. The government has not been able to table an offer that will be acceptable to our members.” More>>

Patrol Car Stolen, Glocks Taken: Manhunt In Gore

The driver rammed the patrol car before fleeing on foot with Police chasing, also on foot. The man has then circled back around, stolen the patrol vehicle, which had the keys left in it, and rammed another Police car... Two Police-issued Glock pistols were stolen. More>>


"Shocking And Dangerous": Accused Mosque Shooter's Prison Letter Posted Online

The man accused of the Christchurch mosque attacks has sent seven letters from prison and had two others withheld, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says. Corrections has now blocked the accused gunman from sending or receiving mail... More>>


Standing On List Only: Paula Bennett To Run National’s Election Campaign

The National Party is pleased to announce the appointment of Paula Bennett as our Campaign Chair for the 2020 General Election, President Peter Goodfellow says. More>>

Waiver For State Care Inquiry: Historic Abuse Survivors 'Can Speak Freely'

Abuse in state care survivors can take part in the forthcoming Royal Commission proceedings without being bound by any confidentiality obligations to Crown agencies under their historic claim settlements, Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins said. More>>


Trail Trial: Sexual Violence Court Reduces Lead-Up Times And Trauma

An evaluation of New Zealand’s first sexual violence court has confirmed that the approach taken in the judge-led pilot considerably reduces the time that cases take to reach trial. More>>




InfoPages News Channels