Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

It's time to balance the books

25 March 2004

It's time to balance the books

The Green Party is warning that a lower-than-expected December quarter current account deficit and a small February trade surplus are no cause for complacency.

Statistics New Zealand announced today that the quarterly current account deficit was $1.92 billion and the monthly trade surplus was $136 million.

"New Zealand is still living way beyond its means, despite today's results being better than expected," said Green Co-Leader and Finance Spokesperson, Rod Donald.

"The fact remains that our current account deficit for the 2003 year was $5.94b, up from $4.66b in 2002, and on current projections is expected to get worse for at least the next three years.

"It's no consolation that our country has been spending more than its been earning for over 30 years in a row.

"New Zealand's international debt is now over $100b because successive governments have refused to take the necessary steps to ensure that our economy is self-reliant and sustainable.

"This failure is most apparent in relation to trade in goods where New Zealand's reputation as an export-led economy has been destroyed by trade deficits for eight out of the last ten years. The annual trade deficit announced today of $3.49b is the worst February year deficit in New Zealand's history.

"It's time to balance the books. The Government's free trade agenda has failed to deliver and needs to be replaced by a determined 'Buy New Zealand-made' campaign, led by the Government through its own purchasing policies.

"Finance Minister Michael Cullen should also introduce across-the-board tariffs on imports, which would not only reduce the current account deficit but also provide some relief from the high dollar for domestic manufacturers," said Mr Donald.


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Scoop 3.0: How You Can Help Scoop’s Evolution

Entering into its third decade of operation, the Scoop news ecosystem is set to undergo another phase of transformation and evolution.

We have big plans for 2018 as we look to expand our public interest journalism coverage, upgrade our publishing infrastructure and offer even more valuable business tools to commercial users of Scoop. More>>

 
 

Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>

ALSO:

Parental Leave: National's Time-Sharing Change Fails

National has proposed a change to the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill that would allow both parents to take paid parental leave at the same time, if that is what suits them best. More>>

ALSO:

Train Free Thursday: Workers Strike To Defend Terms Of Employment

"They signed up to these conditions a year ago when they got the contract for Wellington's rail services. Now they're trying to increase profits by squeezing frontline workers." More>>

ALSO:

Seclusion: Ombudsman Emphasises Importance Of Monitoring

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that while there have been changes to the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017 to prohibit the use of seclusion, the report is an important reminder of the importance of regular monitoring of schools. More>>

ALSO:

United Future History: "All Good Things Must End"

'We’re extremely proud of what we’ve achieved over the past 15 years, working alongside the government of the day, both National and Labour.' Mr Light told members on Monday. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Outcome, And The Hobbit Law

Somehow the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal has come lurching back from the dead – and as predicted in this column last week, the member countries gathered in Vietnam have announced a deal in broad principle, shunted aside until a later date the stuff on which they don’t agree, and declared victory. More>>

Agreeing To Differ: Greens Maintain Opposition To TPPA
“The Green Party has long opposed the TPPA. The new proposed deal, which came out of the weekend’s talks, still contains key ISDS concessions to corporations that put our democracy at risk, so our position remains the same,” said Green Party trade spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman. More>>

ALSO:

Monitoring Report: A New Chapter For Children’s Rights In New Zealand?

The Children’s Commissioner is calling on the country to embrace children’s rights to ensure their overall well-being. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election