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Red tape choking growth target

Red tape choking growth target

National's Finance spokesman Don Brash is warning that more large companies will cut capital investment in New Zealand if the Government continues with its heavy-handed regulation of the business sector.

"To have our biggest public company, Telecom, cut investment by over half a billion dollars in the last two years is about as clear a signal you can get that this country is in trouble," says Dr Brash.

"National, along with many in the business sector, has warned the Government for months that its increasingly anti-business policies will choke our future growth prospects, but it has clung to the coat-tails of a buoyant economy and ignored the signs.

"Now the good times are coming to an end and business is feeling the full weight of Labour's pervasive regulations - OSH and the Resource Management Act, the Local Government Bill, labour laws and stifling compliance costs.

"The Finance Minister's argument that the sector would eventually accept these changes is clearly way off the mark. Major concerns raised by Telecom and Carter Holt Harvey, along with slumping business confidence, are proof of that.

"If New Zealand is to have any chance of achieving higher sustainable growth and moving back to the top half of the OECD, the Government has to get rid of these major roadblocks to growth.

"Talking the talk on encouraging innovation and growth is one thing - actually doing it is another," says Dr Brash.

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