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Big Day Out may become Last Day Out

Big Day Out may become Last Day Out For a While says Tamaki Makaurau MP, Dr Pita Sharples

Dr Pita Sharples, Co-leader of the Maori Party

Thursday 17 January 2008

Legislation on Ticket-Scalping Needed The Big Day Out' Music Festival to take place at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland tomorrow, stands at risk of becoming the last day out for a while for some Aucklanders, according to Dr Pita Sharples.

"For a start, I'm disgusted at the prices being asked by people through the exploitation practice of ticket scalping" said Dr Sharples.

According to media reports, the highest price paid so far on the internet side 'Trade Me' has been $620 for a ticket originally sold at $110.

"Ticket scalping dramatically bumps up the prices and potentially means concerts like Big Day Out just become too out of the range of most people" said Dr Sharples.

"It's ironic that the Government introduced legislation last year to ban ticket scalping from international events, while these homegrown events are still at risk of such profiteering" says Sharples.

Rising Inflation Places Struggling Families under even more Pressure "The other major issue, of course, is today's jump in the Consumer Price Index, taking the annual inflation rate above the ceiling of the Reserve Bank's target band" said Dr Sharples.

"Rising inflation will see more and more families feeling the pinch of economic pressures" said Dr Sharples, Finance spokesperson for the Maori Party.

"The rising inflationary pressures of higher food costs for basic items like milk, butter, cheese; and the ever-rocketing oil prices is just causing far too much pressure on families, and on workers" said Dr Sharples.

"For far too many of our whanau, these basic food items, and the price of petrol are making the chance to even have a day out, an unaffordable luxury" said Dr Sharples.

"We know that there is a ripple effect, that means an increase in prices in one area will also push prices up elsewhere - like in rents, clothing, and other costs of living".

"What the 2007 Social Report told us too, is that on average there is relatively little change for those with incomes in the lowest 20%, after adjusting for inflation" said Dr Sharples. "Today's CPI increase throws into sharp view, the adverse impacts that will be particularly stark for low income families".

"It also reminds us, yet again, that we must all start making the changes necessary, to avoid being so reliant on an oil-dependent economy" said Dr Sharples.

Background

The Consumers Price Index increased 3.2% in the year to December; influenced by a massive lift in petrol prices (up 16.9% for the year).

The Food Price Index also released today, showed an annual movement of a 4.4% increase to December 2007, with highest prices for grocery items (the price of milk rose 4.9% over the year).

ENDS

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