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MED Consultants Cost Less Than Under National

Ministry of Economic Development consultants cost less than under the National Government.

The Deputy Prime Minister has reduced the costs of consultants in his Ministry compared to those hired under National, reducing the percentage of expenditure on consultants in the Ministry from 9.3% to 8.7% and when one off reviews and startup costs are excluded the cost reduces to 7.6%.

"Nationals record on consultants was appalling. This government is committed to reducing consultants where we can," Deputy Prime Minister Jim Anderton said.

"In the 1998/99 financial year under National, the Ministry of Commerce spent 9.3% of expediture on consultants.

"In the first 11 months of the 1999/00 financial year The MED spent 8.7% of expenditure to date on consultants. It is expected that this figure will come well under what was spent under the National government the year before.

"If the Electricity Inquiry, Telecommunications Inquiry and start up costs of the government's economic development strategies are excluded this falls to 7.6%.

"The logo for the Ministry of Economic Development cost only $19,910, which compares favourably to the logos for the IRD that cost $85,000, WINZ that cost $90,000 and Te Papa that cost $110,000 when National and Act were in charge.

Commenting on the set up costs of Industry NZ and the Ministry of Economic Development he said.

"Industry NZ, the Ministry of Economic development needed to be set up. When I came into government very few people in the public service knew about economic development let alone remembered the last time the government was involved in it.

"I had a dilemma, either wait until the public service was rejuvenated and do nothing on economic development, or hire in help from the private sector.

"I elected to get help from the private sector while at the same time building up the public sector's capacity.

"Nevertheless total expenditure on consultants in my Ministry has actually decreased from last year," Jim Anderton said.

ends

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