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NZ's export income continues to plummet

NZ's export income continues to plummet

A $3 billion drop in export income over the past year spells bad news for an economy already overburdened with increasing compliance costs, says National's Trade Spokesperson Lockwood Smith.

"Declining export earnings have become a steady trend. For every one of the last 14 months, we've earned less from our exports than we did for the same month in the previous year.

"With the New Zealand dollar reaching new highs against the US dollar in June and July, the situation is only going to get worse.

"Up until now, high levels of immigration have buoyed the domestic economy and saved New Zealand from a collapse in our economic growth. But you can't lose $3 billion from exports without it starting to hurt sooner or later," says Dr Smith.

He notes that since May, the latest month for which export statistics are available, export prices, such as beef prices, have dropped significantly.

"Like it or not, agriculture forms a very important part of New Zealand's economy. In recent months farmers have taken a hiding from increasing costs and now they don't have the returns to cover them.

"Until recently, New Zealanders were cushioned from the full impact of Labour's ideological extravagances which have hiked up costs and eroded the competitiveness of New Zealand business.

"This $3 billion loss in export earnings has knocked the stuffing out of that cushion," says Dr Smith.

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