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


Time for Government to change economic thinking

Cr Andy Foster
Wellington City Council

8 May 2013

Time for Government to change economic thinking

Prime Minister John Key’s comments that ‘Wellington is dying’ and ‘we’ (the Government) ‘don’t know how to turn it around’ clearly signal a need for a national population and economic development strategy, according to Wellington City Councillor Andy Foster.

Cr Foster, the Chair of the Council’s Strategy and Policy Committee, says the Prime Minister’s comments are concerning on two fronts. “Despite his subsequent corrections the initial comments must betray what our Prime Minister really thinks. The really worrying comment is that despite thinking this is an issue, the Government doesn’t have any idea what to do about it, and he appears not just to have been talking about Wellington but about much of the country.”

Cr Foster says, “The prediction is that 2/3rds of all population growth in the next 30 years will occur in Auckland. The question has to be whether that is a good thing or not, and if it isn’t what levers are there to pull that might change the future. That critical analysis clearly has not been done.”

“Auckland’s success is imperative for New Zealand, but Government has to look after the whole country.” says Cr Foster. “Auckland is very much at the high end in terms of single cities dominating their country’s population. However successive governments have just accepted the ongoing drift to Auckland. Do we want massive infrastructure costs in Auckland while other parts of our country have empty streets ? The question really is whether as a nation we want to decide our future or merely to let it happen to us. That should be a pivotal leadership question for any Government.”

“I think we should see the Prime Minister’s comments as an opportunity and ask him to task some of his ministers to work with Wellington, and indeed any other areas he considers are ‘dying’ to come up with a strategy and a series of specific actions to ensure their wellbeing.”

“For starters I’d suggest Government might like to consider some regional development initiatives to help Wellington starting with considering the potential for a public private equity partnership in extending the airport runway to assist international connectivity.”

“Te Papa was an inspired regional economic development decision by a previous Government. I’d suggest this Government might also think about ensuring that key cultural and scientific institutions based in Wellington stay here, like the ballet, orchestra, research institutes and so forth.”

“Government has worn a lot of flak for the process it’s gone through to try to get a convention facility in Auckland. We would happily discuss with Mr Key’s appointed Ministers how they might look at convention and concert venues in Wellington.”


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Australia Deportations: English Relaxed On Immigration Centre Conditions

Labour's Annette King: “There have been numerous reports from inside these detention centres on just how bad conditions are... If they were being held in any other foreign jail, I imagine Mr English would be somewhat concerned. More>>


Schools: Achievement-Based Funding Would Be A Disaster

The Education Minister’s speech to the PPTA Conference raising the spectre of achievement data driving a new funding system would be disastrous, says NZEI Te Riu Roa. More>>

  • Video Out-Link - PPTA Annual Conference 2015 on Livestream (Q+A dicussion suggests funding would be directed to less successful schools.)

  • ALSO:

    ECE Report:

    Key In NY: Prime Minister Addresses United Nations

    Prime Minister John Key has addressed the United Nations General Assembly in New York, focusing on a call for action in Syria and on other conflicts, reform of the veto process and on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. More>>.


    Gordon Campbell: On The Lack Of Accountability Over Philip Smith

    In New Zealand, accountability is an exotic creature rarely glimpsed at ministerial level, or among senior management. The flight to Rio by the paedophile /murderer Philip John Smith/Traynor is no exception. More>>


    More On Corrections

    Gordon Campbell: On Putin’s Diplomatic Coup Over Syria

    There’s a simple historical precedent for what is occurring in Syria. During WWII, the Allies joined forces with a known butcher and tyrant – Joseph Stalin of the Soviet Union – in order to defeat a greater evil, Nazi Germany… More>>


    Key 'Didn't Know': Brownlee Seeks Pandas In China

    While Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee is in China pushing a taxpayer funded deal to bring two pandas to New Zealand, the country’s military look set to be hit with a pay freeze, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. More>>


    Scoop Business: GCSB Willing To Extend Cyber-Attack Programme To Local ISPs

    The Government Communications Security Bureau’s ‘Cortex’ cyber-security programme has been successful in helping identify and mitigate a series of cyber attacks since its introduction and an extension to cover local internet service providers is still on the cards... More>>


    Get More From Scoop



    Search Scoop  
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news