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NZ's Trade Crisis Lesson For APEC Visitors

Confirmation today of New Zealand's worst ever trade deficit continues to highlight the failure of National and Labour's free market policies, says the Green Party.

Statistics NZ announced a $1.636 billion deficit for the year to June - NewZealand's fifth consecutive deficit.

"The Government must be having second thoughts about hosting APEC, because foreign leaders will be taking a close look at the New Zealand experiment," said Green Party Co-Leader Rod Donald.

"What they will find is a lopsided economy with imports of cars and consumer good srunning out of control while export receipts continue to decline.

"The Green Party believes we must reduce our dependence on imports instead of pinning all our hopes on increasing exports," he said.

"A deliberate strategy of import substitution would not only get our trade balance out of the red and back in the black, but it would also create desperately needed jobs for New Zealanders.

"Clearly it will take a change of government to bring about some common sense on New Zealand's trade crisis," said Rod Donald.

"Meanwhile, I hope any APEC countries which are contemplating removing all their domestic protections will learn some lessons about the damage such moves can inflict on a small economy," Rod Donald said.


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