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GDP recovers after dismal second quarter

21 December 2000

GDP recovers after dismal second quarter

National's Finance spokesman Bill English says the September quarter GDP figures are "A welcome return to growth after the dismal second quarter".

"In this last calendar year New Zealand lost over a billion dollars of growth in employment and investment because of the Government's mishandling of the economy.

"Much of the recent growth is on the back of improved farmgate returns, due to strong international commodity prices coupled with a low dollar.

"The dollar has subsequently rallied in value and there are also signs that the conditions for commodities won't be so positive next year, as trading partner growth slows.

"The economy next year will benefit from the flow-on of this year's strong export returns, but after that, the outlook is not so robust.

"Earlier this week Treasury confirmed that after a spike in growth to 3.7% in the year to March 2002, growth would settle at an unspectacular 2.6-2.8% per annum for the following three years.

"That is not strong growth. If New Zealand is striving to close the gap in living standards between us and the rest of the world, that level of growth will be woefully inadequate," Mr English said.

Ends

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