Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Budget Lacks Boldness On Growth Goal

For immediate release
May 23, 2002

Budget Lacks Boldness On Growth Goal

The Government’s commitment to economic transformation in the Budget is encouraging, but lacks any strong sense of boldness and urgency, The Knowledge Wave Trust’s Director, Bridget Wickham, said today.

“Announcements in the Budget build on the many incremental initiatives the Government has already taken to foster an economy that is faster-growing, knowledge-based, and innovative,” said Ms Wickham. “There have been significant new investments in areas such as supporting research, commercialisation of new discoveries, and access to venture capital.

“All this is encouraging, but we seem to be inching cautiously towards the goal of faster economic growth rather than taking the big, bold strides needed to make up for lost ground.”

While the economy had benefited in 2001 from low commodity prices and a low dollar and near term growth prospects averaged 2.6%, New Zealand was still a long way short of the annual growth needed to narrow the income gap with the rest of the world’s developed economies.

“The Government has started creating the right framework, as we can see in the tertiary education strategy, in its decision to focus on key sectors like ICT, biotechnology and the creative industries and its recognition that better funding mechanisms are needed to foster research and development.

“The danger is that the effectiveness of these policies in unlocking New Zealand’s huge potential could be undermined by setting our sights too low in important areas like encouraging foreign direct investment.”

Ms Wickham said the proposed new investment agency to be created out of Investment New Zealand and Industry New Zealand was a good example of an excellent initiative at risk from inadequate resources.

“The Boston Consulting Group report that formed part of the Innovation Framework announcements suggested an initial budget of $28 million would be necessary for a new agency to do a thorough job of encouraging foreign direct investment. The $6.5 million allocated in the Budget for the first year suggests the Government has not made this initiative a high priority.”

Ms Wickham said The Knowledge Wave Trust was encouraged to see how far political, business and community thinking had shifted in terms of the need for New Zealand to be transformed into a knowledge society.

“What we would like to see now is that thinking turned into the decisive actions we need to turn around our economic performance. Higher growth is essential for better economic and social outcomes and we recognise that it will require skilful political leadership to maintain consensus behind the importance of this goal. The Trust urges all political parties contesting this year’s general election to seek a policy mix that ensures New Zealand’s economic and social potential is realised.”

For further information contact:
Bridget Wickham
Knowledge Wave Trust
021 666 019

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Hope For Nature: A New Deal For The Commons

Joseph Cederwall on The Dig: The current global paradigm is devastating life everywhere by disrupting vital “ecosystem services” like the food, water, and climate regulation systems that both humanity and biodiversity depend on in an interconnected balance.

It is increasingly clear that the primary driver of this crisis is the limiting and infectious worldview around land and resource use so central to the global capitalist system. To fully understand the biodiversity crisis and explore what comes next, it is necessary to address this mind-virus at the heart of our modern civilisation – the dominion worldview. More>>


SOP For Gun Bill: New Measures For Modified Pistols

The new controls will • Prohibit short-barrelled semi-automatic rifles which currently are defined as pistols because they are shorter than 762 millimetres. • Introduce tighter controls over pistol carbine conversion kits… • Prohibit firearms which contain a part known as a centrefire lower receiver… More>>

'Culturally Arranged Visitors Visa': Fix For Marriage Visa Issue

Earlier this year Immigration New Zealand issued guidance to front line Immigration staff that made it significantly harder for people to get visas to visit their partner. That guidance no longer applies with today’s announcement. More>>


Conflict Of Interest For Key Member: Budget Data Breach Investigation Shut Down

State Services Commissioner Peter Hughes has today terminated the investigation into how Budget-sensitive material was accessed at the Treasury and appointed a new inquirer. More>>

RNZ Report: Mysterious Foundation Loaning NZ First Money

A mysterious foundation that loans money to New Zealand First is under scrutiny, with a university law professor saying although it's lawful, it fails to provide the transparency voters need in a democracy. More>>

Justice: Criminal Cases Review Commission Established

“We’ve seen how our justice system can very occasionally get things spectacularly wrong, even with rights of appeals, and there needs to be a chance for the innocent on the right grounds to seek a final review of their case...” More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Why Sustainable NZ Isn't Self-Sustaining

Asking whether this new, environmentally focussed party can make the 5% MMP threshold may be the wrong question, though. It's more achievable goal would be to knock the Greens below the 5% threshold ... More>>


Report On Consultation: Future Of Tomorrow's Schools

“The 1989 Tomorrow’s Schools reform introduced one of world’s most devolved schooling systems where each school operates largely in isolation of each other... It empowered local communities and modernised an overly bureaucratic system but also led over time to uneven outcomes between schools.” More>>


National Education Doc:




InfoPages News Channels