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Economy needs futureproofing from oil price

Thursday, 22 June 2006,

We need to futureproof the economy from future oil price rises

22 June 2006

The Government's failure to properly invest in public transport has left it on a slippery slope when it comes to reducing the impact of rising oil prices on the current account deficit, the Green Party says.

“Today’s record current account deficit demonstrates the desperate need for the Government to act to reduce our dependence on imported oil,” says Green Party Co-Leader Russel Norman.

Oil imports now represent about 13% of the total cost of imports or about 70% of our entire merchandise trade deficit and will only increase in the future.

“Surely it is the role of Government to look ten or fifteen years into the future and start investing heavily in public transport, biofuels and rail freight to reduce our dependence on a finite resource that will only become more expensive,” says Dr. Norman, the Green Party’s economics spokesperson.

“We are now on a treadmill of more motorways, more cars, more use of imported petrol, higher petrol prices, higher trade deficits.

“It is time for the Government to think outside the square and commit to freeing the economy from oil imports so that we can get off the oil treadmill.

“Sweden has committed to becoming oil free in 15 years, why not us?

“By reducing our dependence on oil we will help our economy and we will help the environment by reducing our greenhouse gas emissions,” says Dr. Norman.


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