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NZ families finding the going tough


Rt Hon Jenny Shipley

Leader of the Opposition

Monday 16 October 2000

NZ families finding the going tough

The worst CPI quarterly rise in a decade confirms what families have been saying to me for weeks, Opposition Leader Jenny Shipley said today.

"Out on the road last week, in places such as Huntly, Pukekohe, Hamilton, Nelson and Canterbury, New Zealanders constantly told me it's getting harder and harder to manage the household budget.

"The high cost of imports caused by the low Kiwi dollar and the constant creep in petrol prices that we've witnessed over the last few weeks is having its toll.

"Inflation as measured by the CPI is running at 3 percent - right at the top edge of the Reserve Bank's level of toleration.

"Under National, New Zealanders had a decade in which they could at least rely on prices staying stable.

"That confidence is over for the foreseeable future. In less than a year under Labour things have changed considerably and families are feeling the effects of the damage that's been done to the economy.

"My worry is that New Zealanders haven't seen the worst of it yet. A lot of the tough stuff caused by the low dollar and high petrol prices is still to come through in the official measurements.

"On behalf of New Zealanders, my plea to the Government is to listen to what New Zealanders are saying.

"The Government should at least show it knows the extent of the problem. It must show that it is willing to respond by bringing together a package of measures that will restore confidence among consumers and businesses.

"To date the Government's refusal to do so has simply compounded problems. It must act urgently to get New Zealand back on the road to prosperity," Mrs Shipley said.

Ends


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