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Labour's Tax Hikes Would Drive Brightest Kiwis Off

Media Statement By
Tony Ryall
Minister of Youth Affairs

11 August, 1999

Labour's Tax Hikes Would Drive Brightest Kiwis Offshore

"Labour's promise of tax hikes will drive more young, bright New Zealanders overseas", Youth Affairs Minister, Tony Ryall, said today.

"Labour-Alliance's promised tax increases sends exactly the wrong message to ambitious bright young kiwis", said Mr Ryall.

"It tells them that their achievements would not be welcome in New Zealand and would be punished by a Labour-Alliance government.

"At a time when New Zealand wants to keep our brightest lights in New Zealand, Labour-Alliance's strategy is short-sighted and downright foolhardy.

"Helen Clark told the Evening Post of 5 August, that bright young kiwis were leaving New Zealand to "avoid repaying student loans".

"If that's the case is Labour now promising to stem the tide by abolishing student loans?

"The fact is most are leaving because they can earn more money offshore and see themselves as part of the Global Village.

"This is the reality of the challenge New Zealand faces if we are to keep our brightest people in New Zealand. And, it is these people who are the lifeblood - the very heart - of a knowledge based economy.

"You can't have it both ways, Helen. You can't expect to build a leading edge economy while you punish, with tax hikes, the people you hope will do the building.

"National makes no apology for wanting to reward enterprise and success. Letting all New Zealanders keep more of their own money through tax cuts is the best way for a Government to do that", said Mr Ryall.

ENDS

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