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Trade deficit beyond a joke

28 July 2005

Trade deficit beyond a joke

Today's June year-end $5.18 billion trade deficit is crippling the New Zealand economy, the Green Party says.

Statistics New Zealand announced today a deficit of $522 million for the month of June, which caps off 13 consecutive monthly trade deficits, taking the June-year deficit to $5.176 billion.

"The message from today's appalling result is that New Zealand needs to reduce its deficit on oil and kick the free trade habit," Greens Co-Leader Rod Donald says.

"The rising cost of oil is starting to bite with the value of crude imports up a massive 65 percent. It's time for the Government to pay more attention to the Green Party's strategy to reduce that dependence through a comprehensive package of efficiency measures and demand management.

"The trade deficit also highlights the failure of the Government's free trade policies. The trade deficit with Singapore has hit an all-time record of $690 million, with exports to that partner still below what they were before the CEP took effect.

"New Zealand's trade deficit with Australia has also hit a new record - $1.44 billion.

"However, both of these are eclipsed by the trade deficit with China, which has increased over $500 million in the last 12 months to a massive $2.09 billion," he says.


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