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Cullen on competitiveness survey

Cullen on competitiveness survey

Finance Minister Michael Cullen today warned that the results of the Global Competitiveness Survey showing New Zealand had dropped six places from last year to 16th of 80 countries should be interpreted with care.

“It is worth noting, for example, that Japan with its becalmed economy has risen eight places [from 21 to 13] over the same period while the Irish tiger has fallen from 11th place to 24th.

“Given the relative rates of growth of these two economies, it is hard to see on what criteria Japan would lead Ireland or would rise as Ireland was falling,” Dr Cullen said.

A close reading of the findings also showed that our drop in rankings was driven primarily by the corporate sector’s use of technology, innovativeness and investment in R&D and by New Zealand’s poor savings rates.

“These are all problems which the government has identified and is working on. But they are not areas which are under the government’s immediate or direct control,” he said.

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