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Time for an economy that works for New Zealanders

Grant Robertson

MP for Wellington Central


20 March 2017

Time for an economy that works for New Zealanders

Nine years of inaction and complacency by National have left major holes in the economy that are being exploited at a cost to New Zealanders, says Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.

“On multiple fronts National's failure to be an active manager of the economy is being exposed. It's time for a Labour Government that understands that the economy is not an end in itself, but a means to create a decent life for all Kiwis.

“The failure of large multi-nationals to pay their fair share of tax hurts everyday taxpayers. When we desperately need more resources for housing, health and education, it is immoral for overseas corporations to get away with paying little or no tax.

“After nine years National has finally lumbered into an investigation. The lack of urgency is remarkable. We did not need to just sit and wait for multilateral efforts to come to fruition. We should have acted earlier in the interests of New Zealand taxpayers.

“When it comes to land purchases, National's failure to direct and resource the Overseas Investment Office means that New Zealanders now have little or no confidence that our interests are being protected in land deals.

“The same applies to our housing market. There is simply no reason for New Zealand to continue to be a financial parking lot for cashed up offshore speculators.

“Just as they do in Australia we can say that overseas interests need to be building new stock if they want to buy here. If they are just going to buy up existing houses and shut out first home buyers, then we should simply say no.

“These issues highlight a fundamental difference in approach between Labour and National on the economy. We believe that the economy should work for all New Zealanders, and that the government is an active partner in making that happen.

“National are bound up in their 'hands off the wheel' ideology, mixed in with looking after their corporate backers in a cocktail of complacency.

“New Zealanders deserve better, and will get it with a Labour Government in September,” Grant Robertson said.

ends

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