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We Must Stop The Brain Drain

Latest immigration figures showing a net gain of more than 1600 people in July, are being quoted as evidence that the brain drain is reversing. But it's not so, ACT leader Richard Prebble says.

"When you look at the figures, you see New Zealand is still losing skilled people at an alarming rate, while most of the new immigrants are unskilled," Mr Prebble said.

"More than 170,000 talented Kiwis have emigrated during the past 12 months. The latest news is that the UK has begun a campaign to attract our best doctors.

"In the month of June alone, New Zealand lost 944 teachers, 654 accountants and related professionals, 355 lawyers, 310 business professionals, 236 nurses, 150 senior government administrators, 148 scientists and 144 computer professionals.

"Some of them were replaced by equally-qualified immigrants but there was still a net loss of skilled people overseas ' a trend which has been consistent since late-1999.

"We're not going to reverse the brain drain by continuing with the polices of the Labour/Alliance government which have produced virtually no economic growth ' despite the most favourable terms of trade for 30 years, the low dollar and the fact that they inherited an economy growing at 5 percent, with the books in the black.

"The country is paying the price for higher income taxes, the re-regulation of the labour market, the crippling effect of the Resource Management Act on economic development and the government's unwillingness to tackle welfare reform.

"There's only one way to get the economy growing again, to create the jobs that will keep our best people at home. It's a five-point plan followed by all successful western nations.

lower taxes
a more flexible labour market
less red tape to reduce compliance costs
free trade to embrace the global market
real welfare reform.

"Only the ACT party is promoting this five-point programme," Mr Prebble said.

The latest migration figures are at www.act.org.nz/braindrain (http://www.act.org.nz/braindrain).


ENDS

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