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Job Losses Will Continue - NZ First

Job Losses Will Continue - NZ First

New Zealand First has warned that the loss of local manufacturing jobs will continue unless existing economic and trading conditions are changed to meet the competition posed by low wage economies.

Fisher and Paykel announced today that about 430 jobs are set to go at the company’s Dunedin factory as the company adopts a new global manufacturing strategy, moving three of the company's manufacturing facilities to Thailand, Italy and Mexico.

The company has listed ongoing cost escalations as the main reason for relocating production, plus unhelpful exchange rates and free trade agreements with low cost labour countries like China and Thailand.

Economic development spokesman Doug Woolerton said today that New Zealand exporters had been “thrown to the wolves” over the past 24 years and the loss of Fisher and Paykel’s production in Dunedin was a “tragedy” that had been waiting to happen.

“We are an exporting nation. Selling our goods overseas is our life blood but our economic policies and inadequate trade deals keep choking the life out of the industries that produce goods to sell overseas.

“Unless we get our exchange rate down to a realistic level and improve management of our internal costs, more manufacturers will be heading offshore, costing more jobs and leaving everyone poorer.

“We need to act now and set some economic mechanisms in place to make it worthwhile for our industries to remain in New Zealand and in the hands of New Zealanders,” said Mr Woolerton.

ENDS

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