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New stats underline need for action on exodus

John Key MP
National Party Finance Spokesman

21 July 2005

New stats underline need for action on exodus

"The latest external migration statistics underline the need to take urgent action to address taxation issues," says National Party Finance spokesman John Key.

He is commenting in the wake of a National Party announcement today to ease the repayment burden on those with student loans, by making the interest payments on student debt tax deductible.

"According to the latest numbers, the flight of Kiwis to Australia is accelerating," says Mr Key.

In the year to June there were 33,000 permanent departures to Australia compared with 27,000 the previous year. About 630 Kiwis leave for Australia every week. In net terms (that is permanent and long term migration arrivals less departures) for the year to June 2005, 19,300 New Zealanders left for Australia, compared with net 12,400 the previous June year.

"That amounts to a huge 55% increase. Labour doesn't think this is a problem. In fact just this week Michael Cullen said 'we are probably better off without them.'

"Unlike Labour, National considers the exodus of more than 600 New Zealanders to Australia every week to be a very serious problem indeed.

'We are determined to address this brain drain and today's announcement on student loans is part of that process," says Mr Key.


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