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


Anderton Speech to CTU Canterbury

Hon Jim Anderton Progressive leader Speech to CTU Canterbury

7pm Tuesday 30 August 2005-08-29 Woolston Club in the Bowling Club Pavilion 43 Hargood St Christchurch


The key policy that I bring to the coalition for workers is economic development in order to achieve full employment and better paid jobs.

In the 1980s and 1990s we had governments who thought it was important to maintain 7 per cent unemployment in order to keep inflation down, guided by Don Brash as Governor of the Reserve Bank.

The added trauma caused by restructuring put tens of thousands more out of work.

I have consistently opposed such policies.

In the 1980s and 1990s they led to a massive redistribution of wealth from the poor to the rich.

Between 1982 and 2001 the richest 10 per cent of the population gained 35 per cent in household incomes and the poorest lost 9 per cent.

We are still suffering the consequences today.

I'm now pleased to be in constructive coalition with a significantly changed Labour Party, where the Progressive Party contributes to both creating jobs and lifting wages.

The whole thrust of the work undertaken by the Ministry of Economic Development - which I established in the first coalition with Labour - is to lift the value in our economy, as that is the only way we will sustainably lift living standards for all New Zealanders.

There is no future in promoting low wage jobs in New Zealand.

Some will complain about trading with China for example.

If China makes cheap products at the low end of the value chain we're never going to compete and it doesn't help our workers to put up trade barriers so low wage jobs are protected.

The best way to raise wages is to compete in the global market effectively on our talents, our creativity and innovation.

Where a low value industry is struggling it is assisted to make the move to higher value production.

This is exactly what we have done in the textiles industry and it's working - exports have more than doubled since 1999 from $208 million to half a billion.

We've got to focus on high value - like Peri Drysdales 'Untouched World' or Deanne Apparel's flexible production strategies rather than being the 'cheapest' producers.

So the Progressive Party keen to work with you to lift New Zealand towards a high wage economy.

Progressive is also promoting decent conditions for workers.

We fought for, and won (by working with unions), four weeks paid annual leave for workers.

We have also worked hard to protect the few statutory holidays we have left where the majority of workers get a break.

We don't want workers being forced to work through Easter for example.

Progressives 2 votes were the deciding ones in keeping Easter Sunday safe in the Shop Trading Hours Bill last year.

Matt and I have been consistent ever since leaving labour, in supporting workers rights.

We've fought for key policies like paid parental leave, work/life balance, minimum wage increases, apprenticeships and industry training.

As a minor party coalition partner people don't often get to hear about the daily wins you have in improving policy and the big wins you do hear about are bound to be claimed by others.

That's frustrating.

But I can tell you this - you have to be inside the government to make daily improvements to policy.

You have to be able to negotiate, argue a point and make incremental gains to make progress.

Progressives are well experienced in achieving things in Parliament without screaming and shouting or slamming our partner in government.

You have to be constructive to get things done for New Zealanders.

The Progressives are a sensible, experienced, effective coalition partner and your vote is well rewarded when it is used to support us.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news