“A bleak new milestone is yet another reminder that Labour doesn’t get basic economics,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
The Ministry of Social Development has confirmed that 200,000 New Zealanders are on an unemployment benefit.
“New Zealand is led by nice, well-meaning people, but no one in Government gets ECON101.
“While the country was in lockdown, and most businesses were closed, Labour raised the minimum wage, flatly denying that it would cause job losses. Well, the verdict is in. Forcing firms to pay more put people out of work.
“The economy is now in recession, but it’s business as usual when it comes to Labour piling tax and red tape on New Zealanders.
“In the past month, it’s imposed new red tape on our rural sector and is restricting overseas investment.
“This week, it piled $250 million more in tax on New Zealanders, through road user charges and petrol and alcohol excise.
“Kiwis just want to be productive, get ahead, and make a difference in their own lives. Making it harder for them to work and do business and raising costs will hurt, not help.
“A common sense approach would be this: First, do no harm to the economy.
“New Zealanders are getting no certainty from Labour. The Prime Minister said on Tuesday it was dangerous to talk about opening the border, but today claimed an Australian bubble was on the horizon. Which is it? New Zealanders are desperate for certainty.
“ACT has a clear and comprehensive 5-point plan to balance the budget while not raising taxes, increase employment opportunities, invest more in public health and use better technology at the border, and reduce red tape to get the economy going again.”