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Record trade deficit highlights flawed policies

6 October, 2004

Record trade deficit highlights flawed policies

The Green Party has placed responsibility for the all- time record August year trade deficit of $3.83 billion firmly at the feet of the Labour-led government.

Statistics New Zealand reported today that the trade deficit for the year to August was $3.83 billion, up $1.01 billion on August 2003. The August month deficit of $718 million, or 30.3 per cent of exports, is the largest since 1982.

"It seems that the more Labour talks up free trade and pursues preferential deals with sweat-shop economies, the worse New Zealand's trade deficit gets," said Green Co-Leader, Rod Donald.

"How bad do our trade and balance of payment deficits need to get before Labour faces the reality that its so-called export led and free market strategies are flawed, and accepts that it should focus on making our economy self-reliant and sustainable?

"Opening our borders to a flood of sweatshop goods from Thailand and China will only make our bad trade situation even worse," said Mr Donald.

ENDS


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