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Strewth Helen - She's Not Too Flash!

"In a week when Helen Clark outlined her Government's 'vision' for New Zealand's future, there is mounting local and international evidence that she is leading our economy up a blind alley," says National finance spokesman David Carter.

Mr Carter says most informed local commentators bagged Ms Clark's pre-hyped, innovation package as long on rhetoric and short on detail.

"The Government's intent to implement anti-growth polices such as ratifying Kyoto ahead of our competitors, impose a GM moratorium and make retrograde changes to OSH and holiday laws, as well as its failure to address complications in the RMA or contemplate business tax reforms also drew well-founded criticism.

"Now, international experts KPMG's latest survey of corporate tax shows that New Zealand's rate of 33 per cent is higher than the average in the OECD, EU, Latin American and Asian Pacific regions.

"In fact, last year, of the 30 OECD countries surveyed 12 - including Australia - actually cut their corporate tax rates.

"Meanwhile, New South Wales Labor Premier Bob Carr has also joined the chorus of critics. He recently told the Australian Financial Review that Australia must not replicate the performance of his New Zealand Labour Party counterparts, because 'its strategy has turned New Zealand back from economic competitiveness'.

"Perhaps Helen Clark would do best to listen to the wise counsel of her Aussie Labour Party colleague, rather than risk damaging the vital relationship of New Zealand's most important export market by being overly sensitive to criticism and taking silly pot-shots at the Australian Government," Mr Carter added.


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