“Labour has given New Zealand the worst of all possible worlds: growth has dropped off a cliff, while it’s created a mountain of debt,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“Today’s figures show what New Zealanders I’m hearing up and down this country already know. The Government has failed to balance its approach to Covid-19. It’s been too busy lecturing New Zealanders from the podium and hosing money at dubious projects when it should have been asking ‘what economic activity can we safely allow?’
“ACT has been saying all along that we need to ask ‘what activities are safe, not essential?’, and that we need to compare ourselves with the best in the world.
“Labour will blame the size of the recession on international headwinds, but the Australian economy has contracted by just 7.6 percent and Taiwan’s by only 5.5 percent.
“Labour didn’t go hard and early on Covid-19. It then spent 102 days doing victory laps rather than improving testing, tracing and isolating. The result is that we’ve had to rely on expensive and damaging lockdowns as a response to Covid-19 outbreaks.
“Even before Covid-19 hit, the economy was slowing under Labour’s anti-growth policies.
“The focus now must be on rebuilding the economy, so we can restore livelihoods and get our way of life back.
“Every other political party is in a race to outspend the others. Every other party says it has a plan to grow the economy, but only ACT has released one.
“We’ve set out a clear roadmap to recovery in order to rebuild our economy.
“This highlights the fundamental choice Kiwis face in four weeks about the future of our country.
“We can have more of the same, or we can have a faster recovery, with lower taxes and less debt left to our kids.
“ACT’s roadmap to recovery will grow the economy and job opportunities, cut taxes and red tape, invest in public health to prepare for the next pandemic, enact pro-growth reforms, and leave less debt for our kids.
1: Getting Kiwis Back To Work
• 90-day trials for all businesses
• Three-year moratorium on minimum wage increases
2: Balancing The Books
• Returning to surplus by 2024/25 and beginning repaying the debt
• Cutting wasteful spending
• Reducing the 30% tax rate to 17.5% and cutting GST to 10% for 12 months
3: Cutting Red Tape
• Repealing the Zero Carbon Act and the oil and gas ban
• Allowing investors from OECD countries to invest without having to jump through bureaucratic hoops
• Limiting government’s ability to pass harmful regulation
4: Building For The Future
• Replacing the Resource Management Act and amending the Building Act
• End politically motivated infrastructure funding decisions
5: Covid-19 Response Plan
• New Zealand Epidemic Response Unit: Based on Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Centre
• Government as referee, not player: Allow alternative facilities for safe, electronically-monitored isolation, with strict punishment for rule-breakers
• Risk-weighted: Treat different countries and travellers with different levels of caution
• Technology-driven: Such as the Covid Card, ëlarm, rapid tests, temperature checks and thermal cameras
• Continuous improvement: Constantly compare ourselves with the best and seek to strengthen our resistance.