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


Tariff Cuts Shameful, Says Union

Tariff Cuts Shameful, Says Union

Today's decision of the Labour Government to resume unilateral tariff reductions was described as shameful and ideologically driven by Maxine Gay, Secretary of the Clothing Workers Union.

"There is no good reason for these reductions," she said. "No-one benefits. The Government loses revenue, workers lose their jobs, manufacturers lose their businesses. All for what? Mythical benefits for agriculture?

"NZ has been down this path before," Maxine Gay said. "Throughout the late 80's and the 90's New Zealand reduced tariffs and sacrificed manufacturing in the forlorn hope that the world would follow suit. Well the world didn't and New Zealand became a laughing stock, standing naked before the altar of Free Trade. And now, here we go again!"

Maxine Gay also questioned the mandate the Government had for such action. "The last time I looked the Labour Party's policy was no more unilateral tariff cuts - even Jim Sutton has said 'we are not going to reduce our tariff barriers unilaterally, just because some ideology says we should' (NZ Herald 22.11.2001). So what's changed?

"Today's announcement is telling manufacturers that the Government has no long-term commitment to them; that their interests will be traded off when politically opportune; that the skills of New Zealand manufacturing workers aren’t valued and that their industry is not worth nurturing. It is a betrayal of everything a Labour Party is meant to stand for.

"It will destroy much of the confidence that industry strategies were gradually rebuilding and places 18,000 jobs at risk," she said.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>


Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news