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Interim Response - Much Ado About Nothing

Business expected much from the Ministerial Panel on Business Costs but will be disappointed by the Government's response so far, National's spokesperson on Compliance Costs Warren Kyd said today.

"In Opposition, Labour pledged to cut compliance costs, but has now stalled its response until December. This leaves the Government little time in its term of office to make any changes to the major causes of high compliance costs.

"Business is still smarting from Labour rejecting changes to the Resource Management Act, which would have significantly reduced costs. Although promises to beef up the Environment Court are welcome because this may reduce delays, this does not go to the root of the problem. The Act needs major change.

"There is no mention of ACC in the Government's interim response today to the panel's 162 recommendations, an area in which Labour has removed choice and increased costs hitting many businesses very hard in the pocket. Now the Government has the self-employed in its sights.

"ACC, the substantive parts of the RMA, OSH legislation, environmental issues, HASNO legislation and tax compliance are major issues which cost business the most. Business will be expecting the Government to make bold announcements in these areas in December. But no one will be holding their breath."

"The Minister's vague statement today wasn't worth the paper it was written on. It was all about being seen to be doing something."

Mr Kyd hopes that when the final response comes in December, all the matters raised in the report will be dealt with and a timetable for implementing the recommendations will be announced.

Ends


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