Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Wage gap with Australia blows out over $50

Phil Goff
Leader of the Labour Party

28 July 2010 Media Statement

Wage gap with Australia blows out over $50 under Key

The wage gap with Australia has blown out by more than $50 a week under National despite Prime Minister John Key saying before the election ‘the fundamental purpose of his government’ would be to narrow the gap, says Labour Leader Phil Goff.

“The trend is getting worse,” Phil Goff said. “The gap is actually accelerating. In the past quarter, according to official statistics, Australian wages have increased by $17 a week, compared to $3 for Kiwi workers.

“Economic Development Minister Gerry Brownlee got it totally wrong yesterday when he told Parliament that the income gap ‘is certainly a lot less than it was when Labour was in office’. What he said in the House was untrue. He made it up.

“Kiwi workers have, in fact, fallen more than $50 further behind. John Key has failed to deliver on his most basic promise to Kiwis,” Phil Goff said.

“As well, Kiwi workers will fall even further behind from October when they will be paying a consumption tax (GST) that is 50 percent higher than in Australia.

“To make matters worse, for the first time in a decade Kiwi workers are more likely to be unemployed than Australians because the unemployment rate is now higher here.

“There has been an absolute expression of no confidence in National’s record on this issue,” Phil Goff said. “Don Brash said at the weekend that New Zealand would not catch up with Australia on ‘the Government’s present track’ and Reserve Bank Governor Alan Bollard has described National’s posturing as ‘unrealistic’.

“It is perhaps a reflection of the growing gap that Qantas is now employing staff on trans-Tasman flights out of its fully-owned subsidiary JetConnect in New Zealand because they can pay 30 percent less here and cut superannuation entitlements.

“National has no plan or even interim targets to catch up with Australia,” Phil Goff said. “It set up a 2025 taskforce which was a debacle and abandoned immediately, but National has put forward no alternative since. Mining in national parks was the answer, but that’s fallen over and was a shambles. The Jobs Summit has come up with nothing substantial in terms of closing the gap or creating jobs.

“New Zealand needs a skills plan to lift productivity, an R&D plan to increase innovation, and a savings plan to increase capital for investment, but in all these areas Australia has moved forward and New Zealand back since November 2008.”


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Housing Issues: Fairer Rules For Tenants And Landlords

The key changes include:

- Limit rent increases to once every 12 months and banning the solicitation of rental bids by landlords.

- Improve tenant’s security by removing a landlord’s right to use no cause terminations to end a periodic tenancy agreement...

- Improve compliance with the law by increasing financial penalties and introducing new tools to take direct action against parties who are not meeting their obligations. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Farming Sector’s Persecution Complex

The narrative that our farmers are ‘doing it tough’ plays into a number of wellworn stereotypes ... More>>


corrections, prisonCorrections: Independent Review Of Prisoner Mail Management

The independent review into the prisoner mail system has today been released, with Corrections accepting all 13 recommendations and making a number of changes to strengthen the management of prisoner mail. More>>


IPCA: Unlawful Detention Of Teenager; Influence Of Investigation

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that former Inspector Hurimoana Dennis unlawfully detained an Auckland teenager in 2015, and improperly influenced the outcome of a criminal investigation into his own son in 2014. More>>


SOP For Gun Bill: New Measures For Modified Pistols

The new controls will • Prohibit short-barrelled semi-automatic rifles which currently are defined as pistols because they are shorter than 762 millimetres. • Introduce tighter controls over pistol carbine conversion kits… • Prohibit firearms which contain a part known as a centrefire lower receiver… More>>

'Culturally Arranged Visitors Visa': Fix For Marriage Visa Issue

Earlier this year Immigration New Zealand issued guidance to front line Immigration staff that made it significantly harder for people to get visas to visit their partner. That guidance no longer applies with today’s announcement. More>>


Conflict Of Interest For Key Member: Budget Data Breach Investigation Shut Down

State Services Commissioner Peter Hughes has today terminated the investigation into how Budget-sensitive material was accessed at the Treasury and appointed a new inquirer. More>>

RNZ Report: Mysterious Foundation Loaning NZ First Money

A mysterious foundation that loans money to New Zealand First is under scrutiny, with a university law professor saying although it's lawful, it fails to provide the transparency voters need in a democracy. More>>

Justice: Criminal Cases Review Commission Established

“We’ve seen how our justice system can very occasionally get things spectacularly wrong, even with rights of appeals, and there needs to be a chance for the innocent on the right grounds to seek a final review of their case...” More>>





InfoPages News Channels