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ACT's anti-kiwi attitude to business growth

22 November 2004

Hon Jim Anderton MP, Progressive Leader

ACT's anti-kiwi attitude to business growth ridiculous

Comments by Rodney Hide attacking the government's work in supporting business growth, including cereal company Hubbard's, are blasted as ridiculous by Progressive Leader and Minister of Economic Development, Jim Anderton today.

"Government support for business growth, through the Growth Services Fund, is essential for New Zealand to expand our economy and lift living standards for all New Zealanders.

The Growth Services Fund, attacked by Rodney Hide after funding was granted for a business growth project run by Hubbard's, offers support for high growth potential firms to purchase external advice, expertise and market development services.

"ACT need to get a grip on themselves and start supporting business growth, instead of attacking good kiwi businesses for wanting to expand and contribute to our economy.

"It is ridiculous to say on the one hand that government's agencies are incapable of picking winners and then, on the other hand, to criticise them when they support companies who are doing well to become even more successful.

"When businesses are committed to expanding in such a way as to contribute to the economy overall by creating new jobs or new high value production, the Labour Progressive government is acting sensibly to help make it happen.

"I am sick and tired of hearing ACT bemoan the positive work being done to support business. It is clear to me that we need to do everything we can to encourage investment in growth because New Zealand businesses have typically under invested in expansion opportunities, building up their capabilities, creating global networks and lifting productivity.

"In order to keep pace with the rest of the world, we still need to do more to encourage business growth. The programmes already being run by the Labour Progressive government are modest compared to most other OECD nations.

"I'm particularly concerned about us keeping pace with Australia which is why I recently announced the Progressive party campaign to reduce company tax to 30 per cent to equal Australia. That will maintain further business expansion in New Zealand, which might otherwise be done in Australia," Jim Anderton said.

Editor's note

The administration of particular grants is an operational issue.

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