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


Overseas debt difficulties worsen

Alliance leader Jim Anderton says overseas debt figures released today are very serious, and will mean higher interest rates and fewer jobs.

“The overseas debt is turning into such a deep swamp that any Government is going to have to take strong measures to get it under control, and all parties face the challenge of saying now what they intend to do.

“Total overseas debt is still increasing faster than GDP is growing. The economy is getting deeper and deeper into debt. Corporate debt increased by around $100 million a week last year.

“Public sector debt was only decreased by asset sales, and those asset sales will mean that more profits flow out of the country in the future and make overseas debt worse.

“The total overseas debt has to be repaid, one way or another, by New Zealanders, through higher interest rates, lower wages, lower profits. It will result in less jobs since every dollar that goes out of the country to service debt is a dollar that isn’t invested in New Zealand.”

Jim Anderton ridiculed claims from the Government that the total level of overseas debt doesn’t matter because it doesn’t show the asset backing.

“Ministers making that statement are fully aware that they don’t even have any evidence that the asset backing has grown. It’s like saying to your bank manager ‘don’t worry about all this extra money I’m borrowing, because I’m using it to buy lots of very attractive new household items.’

“The debt is out of control, expanding alarmingly, and the Government doesn’t even recognise the problem, let alone have any idea what to do about it.”

The rise in short-term ‘hot money’ liability was a particular concern identified by the Alliance.

“Some 43% of the total overseas debt falls due within twelve months with most of the increase coming in 90-day debt. That is known as ‘hot money’ and if the owners of it all decide to leave at the same time our economy will be in very serious trouble. This could happen, for example, in response to balance of payments figures due out this Friday, or perhaps even if Max Bradford takes over a Finance portfolio.

“New Zealand’s increasing exposure to ‘hot money’ liability illustrates the loss of sovereignty that has resulted from the National Party creating more and more total overseas debt,” Jim Anderton said.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On Reforming Parliament’s Toxic Culture

It would be nice to think Parliament was a forum where rationality ruled – and where policies are raised and evaluated in terms of their contribution to the greater good. Obviously, it isn’t like that... More>>

Historic Assualt Allegation: Parliamentary Service Staff Member Stood Down
Rt Hon Trevor Mallard said today: “I do not want to cut across any employment or possible police investigations, but I am satisfied that the Parliamentary Service has removed a threat to the safety of women working in the Parliamentary complex." More>>


Study: Guidelines Needed To Avoid Risks In Government AI

New Zealand is a world leader in government algorithm use – but measures are needed to guard against their dangers. This is the conclusion of a New Zealand Law Foundation-funded report from the University of Otago’s Artificial Intelligence and Law in New Zealand Project. More>>


Pike River: Families Welcome Opening Of Drift

The group representing 29 of the Pike River Families - the Pike River Family Reference Group - has welcomed the unsealing of the mine at a private family event this morning... More>>


Auckland Harbour Bridge: New Design For Walking And Cycling Crossing

The NZ Transport Agency has released plans for its preferred option for a shared path over the Auckland Harbour Bridge which will transform walking and cycling not only across the harbour, but throughout the city. The Transport Agency says its preferred ... More>>


Shaw First Reading Speech: Climate Change Response Bill

Madam Speaker, today we begin the task of amending the Climate Change Response Act [2002], to fulfil the commitment that we have made, as a country, to limit global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. More>>


Housing: More Unsold Kiwibuild Houses Bought By Govt

The Crown underwrite for unsold Kiwibuild homes has been triggered for a second time. Now lack of sales in Mike Greer's development in Canterbury and Auckland means the government has had to buy back seven more homes. More>>


camouflageGordon Campbell: Why We Shouldn’t Genuflect To Security

Reportedly most (and possibly all) of the Royal Commission investigation into the Christchurch mosque shootings will be closed to the general public and to the media… More>>




InfoPages News Channels