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Labour leaves positive legacy

4 December 2008 Media Statement

Labour leaves positive legacy – now where’s Nationals plan?

National must make clear its economic strategy having rejected treasury’s advice, Labour finance spokesperson David Cunliffe said today.

Treasury’s briefing for the incoming Finance Minister clearly shows that the Labour Government left New Zealand in good shape to deal with the current economic downturn.

“Treasury’s advice shows the Labour Government cut gross government debt levels nearly in half from 35 percent to 17 percent,” Mr Cunliffe said.

In recent years, New Zealand performed better than most other OECD countries in terms of economic growth while we also had one of the lowest unemployment rates in the developed world. There is also praise for the Emissions Trading Scheme, Kiwisaver, and the Super Fund.

“It is up to the National Government to ensure that this healthy legacy is not squandered.”

“Labour is willing to work constructively with the National government to build on the economic gains of the last nine years in the interest of all New Zealanders.”

“However the early signs are not positive;
- cuts to Kiwisaver will only worsen the private savings held by New Zealanders
- Cutting R and D tax credits and Fast-forward and broadband delays undermines the drive for innovation.
- Nationals planned tax cuts will worsen the debt outlook.

“National have been saying for a year what they won’t do– now we need to see the plan for what they will do.”


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