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Economic Growth Still Disappointing

28 March 2002

"Today's GDP result will have disappointed many who were expecting a stronger result," says National's Finance spokesman David Carter.

"This is more evidence that the Government has squandered the opportunity to take advantage of the favourable export conditions - especially for our agricultural products."

Mr Carter says the most notable feature of today's result was the mix of growth, with strong domestic activity in consumption and housing offset by weak exports.

"This is the exact mix of growth Dr Cullen criticised during the 1990's. And its unsustainable nature is the very reason the Reserve Bank is now tightening monetary policy.

"Good policy is all about achieving higher sustainable GDP growth. That comes down to quality of education, improving skills, reducing compliance costs and the tax burden.

"The Government current economic policy mix has done nothing to lift New Zealand's sustainable growth rate and we are paying the price," Mr Carter said

Ends

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