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


The best investment in the knowledge economy

The best investment in the knowledge economy is free education.

Liz Gordon MP Wed Aug 18 1999

Liz Gordon
MP The Alliance said the best way to invest in the knowledge economy is to make tertiary education free rather than to patch up the user pays system which turns people away from studying science and technology.

'Another costly review is not needed to tell us that the best way to invest in the knowledge economy is to remove barriers to learning and make tertiary education free,' Alliance Education spokesperson Dr Liz Gordon said.

'All the signals the government sends to students though it's userpays education system discourage students from taking science and technology courses. The scholarships for postgraduate students will not change this pattern if potential science undergraduate students cannot afford a science career.

'Average fees for commerce students this year are between $2,650 and $3,500 whereas science fees this year range between $3,120 and $3,900 between 11 and 18% higher.

'At the same time graduate starting salaries for commerce students were between $40,000 and $48,000. Science students only earnt between $28,500 and $38,000, 21 to 29% lower.

'For young people deciding to do a degree and wanting to pay off a student loan of at least $20,000 the choice of a science degree over a commerce degree is a brave one.

'The student loans scheme is now in its eighth year. 250,000 students owe $3 billion. Many of these students are leaving the country with huge loans never to return, not just because they can avoid their debt but because they can earn much more overseas.

'This government has given away tax cuts worth $2,500 million per year. Free education would cost about $500 million a year. Free education would cost a fifth of the cost of the tax cuts. These figures clearly show that this government's priorities are not in developing the knowledge economy.

'The Alliance's partnership 2000 plan to invest in science research and technology far surpasses the government 5 point reelection plan. In conjunction with the Alliance tertiary education policy to be announced shortly we are investing in the knowledge economy where it really counts,' Alliance Education spokesperson Liz Gordon said.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Perils Of Declaring Premature Victory

Sure enough, Saturday’s Vaxathon was a barrel of fun and a throwback not merely to the Telethons of the past. It also revived memories of those distant days of early 2020, when we were all carefully wiping down our groceries, not touching our faces, washing our hands for 20 seconds and responding to level four lockdowns by putting teddy bears in the window for the benefit of the little kids walking by in their family bubbles. Those were the days, when the Team of Five Million felt like a real, organic thing... More>>

RNZ: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announces Cabinet decision on Covid-19 alert levels

Northland will move to level 2 at 11.59pm on 19 October. Waikato will be held at level 3, to be reviewed on Friday. Auckland will remain in level 3 with current restrictions for another two weeks... More>>



Government: Red Tape Cut To Boost Housing Supply
First home buyers are set to benefit from changes to planning rules being advanced by the Government and the National Party that will enable more medium density housing and cut red tape that acts as a barrier to development... More>>


Economy: Inflation highest in over a decade
The consumers price index rose 2.2 percent in the September 2021 quarter, the biggest quarterly movement since a 2.3 percent rise in the December 2010 quarter, Stats NZ said today. Excluding quarters impacted by increases to GST rates, the September quarter movement was the highest since the June 1987 quarter... More>>


Government: New Zealand Increases Climate Aid Contribution

The Government is making a four-fold increase in the support it provides to countries most vulnerable to the climate emergency, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Climate Change Minister James Shaw announced today... More>>

Pay Cheque To Pay Cheque: Half A Million New Zealanders Have No Savings
New findings from the Consumer NZ sentiment tracker found that 15% of New Zealanders had no savings, and a further 27% were anxious about their level of savings and would like to have more tucked away... More>>

Government: Mandatory Vaccination For Two Workforces

Large parts of two workforces critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19 will be required to be vaccinated, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Our education and health and disability workforces have done an incredible job throughout this pandemic to keep themselves and people safe,” Chris Hipkins said.... More>>

Green Party: Deeply Concerned Space Launches May Be Breaching Nuclear-free Laws

The Green Party is deeply concerned that space launches by Rocket Lab may be breaching nuclear-free laws, given our long-standing position as a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty... More>>




InfoPages News Channels