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.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Royals: The Prince Of Wales And Duchess Of Cornwall To Visit

Prime Minister John Key welcomes today’s announcement that the Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will visit New Zealand in November. This will be the second joint visit for Their Royal Highnesses to New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Tracey Martin Replaced: Ron Mark Is New New Zealand First Deputy Leader

Clayton Mitchell was the successful candidate for the Associate Whip position. Winston Peters was re-elected as Leader by the Caucus. Ron Mark was elected as the Deputy Leader with effect from 10am, Friday, 3rd July. More>>

ALSO:

Rebuild Rebrand: "Regenerate Christchurch" To Replace CERA

The regeneration of Christchurch will be the city’s focus for the next five years as local leadership progressively takes control of the rebuild, Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee says. More>>

ALSO:

Nauru: Scholars Urge Minister To Act On Deteriorating Democracy

“Since the 2013 election in Nauru, there has been a series of disturbing developments on the islands that indicate a severe deterioration in the state of its parliamentary democracy and in the rule of law,” say the scholars. More>>

ALSO:

Foreign Affairs: NZ Begins Presidency Of UN Security Council

Prime Minister John Key has welcomed the start of New Zealand’s month-long Presidency of the United Nations Security Council in New York. More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Cash For Charter Schools, Mould For State Schools

“Recently released financial statements show the Whangarei charter school He Puna Marama received $3.9 million in government funding to the end of last year. Yet their audited accounts show they only spent $1.4 million on education, leaving almost $2.5 million over two years unaccounted for." More>>

ALSO:

Kiwirail Plans Shift From Electric: National Urged Not To Take Backwards Step

The National Government shouldn’t drag New Zealand backwards by replacing its climate friendly electric trains with carbon-polluting diesel trains, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

Capital Connection:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news