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

 


Government must focus on growing social deficit

17 December 2013

Government must focus on growing social deficit

“The Government must move away from a narrow focus on fiscal deficit reduction to the social deficits that have not been addressed”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg.

“The Budget Policy Statement released today shows little change in direction, and does not provide any light for struggling families this Christmas. The Government needs to step up and change its focus to the large and growing social deficit and support those who need it most.”

Rosenberg says “inequality is high and will grow if the benefits of a growing economy are not shared. It shows itself in high levels of child poverty. Wage and salary earners will lose out if the Government pushes through its employment legislation.”

“The forecast growth in the economy is largely driven by a relatively limited number of sources: commodity prices, house building and construction and other activity in the Christchurch rebuild. How will that ‘trickle down’ into more and better jobs and rising wages and salaries? It needs to be much more than a trickle after years of little wage growth.”

“Forecast wage growth after inflation (real wage growth) is slower than forecast productivity increases so wage and salary earners will get a falling share of the income available in the economy.

“Unemployment is forecast to fall only slowly, expected by Treasury to be still at 5.8% in March next year, and above 5% in 2017 – 130,000 people or 5.2%. Employment growth will only slowly reduce the gap that opened up over the last 4 years between employment growth and the increase in the working age population. New Zealand is doing much worse on unemployment than its GDP growth relative to other OECD countries.”

Health and education budgets need more to keep up with rising costs, needs and population, but look like they will grow only slowly.

“Looking to the future, the forecasts for GDP growth are short-lived. Within two to three years the forecasts say economic growth will be back to below the economy’s capacity and similar to low historic levels. Despite it talk, the Government has done nothing to change this but rely on international commodity prices, the rebuild and special deals to businesses big enough to twist its arm. It is not a future that promises well-paid, secure jobs and fairer sharing of the income the economy generates.

“Reducing the deficit is not a plan to fix the problems in society or the economy. What is the Government going to do about these much more important issues?” Rosenberg asks.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

InternetNZ On Snowden Docs: Mass Collection Of Pacific Data Affects Kiwi Holidaymakers

The allegation that New Zealand has conducted mass data harvesting on its Pacific Island neighbours raises concerns about New Zealanders’ communications being collected, says InternetNZ.

“If the allegations are correct, then New Zealand would be mining data about everyone in the Pacific Islands named in the allegations. That’s everyone. Not just individuals who attract specific surveillance warrants, but everyone. This means local residents to visiting Kiwi tourists could be having their data collected." More>>

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Teina Pora Wins Appeal: Gordon Campbell On The Privy Council Decision

The quashing of the convictions of Teina Pora for the rape and murder of Susan Burdett in 1992 has shone a spotlight once again on a major gap in the New Zealand justice system... More>>

ALSO:

Urgent Bill Planned: MP Pay Rises To Match Public Service

Prime Minister John Key today announced an overhaul of the Remuneration Authority Act, tying MP salaries to those of the wider public sector, which will be passed under urgency. More>>

ALSO:

PM's Press Conference: MP Pay Rises, Solid Energy, Iraq

Prime Minister John Key answered questions in his Post-Cabinet press conference about the Iraq deployment, Solid Energy and National’s decision to overhaul the Remuneration Authority Act. More>>

ALSO:

Worksafe: MSD Charged Over Work And Income Ashburton Shooting

WorkSafe NZ has laid one charge against the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) in relation to the shooting at the MSD Ashburton office on 1 September 2014 in which two Work and Income staff were killed and another was injured. More>>

ALSO:

Iraq: Ex-Hostage Says Government Not Putting NZers, Iraqis First

Harmeet Singh Sooden is travelling to Iraq in the coming weeks to work with Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) on a short-term assignment. More>>

ALSO:

Joint Statement: Australia-New Zealand Leaders’ Meeting

Prime Minister Key warmly welcomed Prime Minister Abbott and Mrs Abbott to New Zealand. The visit has enabled wide-ranging and substantive discussion that has underlined the strength, value, diversity and warmth of our trans-Tasman relationship. More>>

ALSO:

Press Conference: Peters To Stand In Northland By-Election

New Zealand First Leader Winston Peters has announced his intention to stand in the Northland by-election, citing his own links to the electorate and ongoing neglect of the region by central government. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news