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Election 2011 - Party Policies - Economy

Election 2011 - Party Policies - Economy


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  • Push the next government to reduce wasteful spending.  In 2005, Labour was spending 29 per cent of the national income.  Today, the same figure is 35 per cent.  ACT would push the next government to return spending to the level it was at in 2005 by repealing the “election bribe” spending of the past two elections.
  • Push the next government to lock in lower taxes by passing ACT’s Spending Cap Bill into law.  The Bill would require government spending to increase only by the level of inflation and population growth.  By reducing government spending and taxes, it would increase the rewards for wealth creation.
  • Push the next government to pass ACT’s Regulatory Standards Bill.  The Bill would test all new regulations for unnecessary red tape, making it easier to do business.
  • Sell state assets such as power generation companies; the overwhelming evidence is that such valuable assets produce more wealth when managed privately.
  • Allow more mining when the economic benefits outweigh the environmental costs. (more here)

  • Extend the Heat Smart home insulation scheme to a further 200,000 households employing 4,000 (10,400 total jobs) New Zealanders for a cost of $350M. EECA calculates the benefits in terms of energy savings, reduced doctors visits, and fewer days off work sick will amount to more than $70 million per year or $1 billion over 30 years.
  • Before the rebuild of Christchurch creates industry capacity constraints, build an additional 2000 new energy-efficient state and community houses nationally, to help rents become affordable and give more families the security of a place to call home. This initiative would create 3,100 direct jobs (9,300 total jobs) and cost $670 million over three years.
  • Put a team of 3,000 paid conservation corps to work planting alongside our degraded streams and rivers, controlling wilding pines, and trapping pests throughout our conservation estate, costing $396 million over three years and creating a total of 8,600 jobs if you include indirect and upstream employment effects.
  • By removing uncertainty over New Zealand’s response to climate change, we can stimulate the planting of approximately 665,000 hectares of new forest in the next ten years. This would create 3,700 direct jobs (11,000 total jobs) over the next three years, cost $36 million, and result in a massive 27 million tonnes CO2 being sequestered by 2020.
  • Strengthen Kiwibank by allowing it to retain its earnings plus a further capital injection, if necessary.Retain state ownership in our publicly-owned energy companies and issue Green Energy Bonds to finance the expansion of the renewable sector while providing a secure investment for New Zealand investors.
  • Reduce the pressure on the exchange rate and the export sector by empowering the Reserve Bank with more tools to manage monetary and prudential policy beside the Official Cash Rate. This would include macro-prudential measures like counter-cyclical reserve ratios and loan-to-valuation ratios as permitted by Basel III requirements.
  • Introduce a comprehensive tax on capital gains (excluding the family home) to encourage private savings and investment in the productive sector.
  • Investigate automatic enrolment in Kiwisaver (with an opt-out option).
  • Boost government R&D funding through a combination of tax credits and grants costing $1 billion over three years. (more here)

  • Labour will prevent overseas purchases of more than 25% of monopoly infrastructure, where that interest is worth $10 million or more.
  • Introduce a general ministerial discretion covering all assets worth more than $100 million that are not covered by our new farm land or monopoly infrastructure rules, modelled on the Australian equivalent. (more available here)
  • Labour will, in the case of procurement contracts over $50m, require the production of an Industry Participation Plan (IPP), which sets out how Kiwi companies can play a bigger role.
  • All IPPs must be approved by a newly established Industry Participation Group (IPG), which will be comprised of mostly private sector individuals. The IPG may also offer advice to parties in respect of any complaints and may also advise the Minister of Economic Development on any aspect of policy or implementation as they see fit. (more here)
  • Labour‟s plan will make KiwiSaver compulsory for every employee aged 18 to 65 from 2014. Labour will gradually increase employer contributions at a rate of 0.5 per cent a year, from 3 per cent to 7 per cent, over 9 years.
  • Labour will establish a “Pipeline for Business Growth Taskforce”, modelled on the Capital Markets Development Taskforce, with a requirement to report in 6 months with recommendations for the pipeline framework, which will connect the training, the R&D, the capital and the market development opportunities so that we can facilitate the advancement of high growth potential businesses.
  • Labour will explore the following ideas for leveraging future capital as part of its economic 
    development strategy, including: Requiring support from an international venture capital as part of eligibility for NZVIF. Entitling domestic venture or angel investors to a deduction of 20% of their investment against other income at the time of investment, and an additional 50% deduction be allowed if capital is lost.Whether a concessional tax rate should be introduced for overseas royalty income of companies based in New Zealand.
  • Under Labour the energy SOEs will not be sold but will be encouraged to grow new subsidiaries to develop products and services for export. New subsidiaries will be able to raise private sector capital, including from KiwiSaver institutions.
  • Labour will work with industries, including local industries, and councils to identify regional infrastructure blockages which if overcome will provide economic growth in exported related fields. (more here)

  • Develop an economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable economic development programme with national and regional development strategies.
  • Incentivise the processing of New Zealand resources in New Zealand so the value-added component benefits the country.
  • Significantly increase the tax take by introducing a tax on financial speculation, called the “Hone Heke tax” (chopping down GST and income tax), which will be designed using examples of similar taxes introduced overseas. Initially it will be used to replace the annual $15 billion collected by GST.
  • Reduce the tax paid by low income earners by not taxing the first $27,000 earned and introduce a more progressive tax scale where the wealthy accept the responsibility to pay the largest share of the tax income.
  • Close corporate tax loopholes to make sure that all businesses, especially transnational companies, pay their full share of tax. (more here)

  • We will support ethical business by placing value on longer-term business thinking including shareholders.
  • Increase volume of ‘better by design’ programmes (NZTE) available for iwi and Māori to access. (more here)

  • National plans to extend the mixed-ownership model to four state-owned energy companies: Mighty River Power, Meridian, Genesis, and Solid Energy. The Government’s shareholding in Air New Zealand is also to be reduced. (more available here)
  • Introduce and pass tougher consumer credit laws announced by the National-led Government, in order to target loan sharks and protect unwary consumers.
  • Tighten the rules for company directors and company registration – including expanded powers for the Registrar of Companies.
  • Pass the Commerce (Cartels and Other Matters) Amendment Bill. (more here)
  • Establish the Future Investment Fund to receive the proceeds from the mixed ownership model – estimated to be $5 billion to $7 billion over three to five years from 2012.
  • Invest $60 million over the next four years in a series of competitive National Science Challenges, to find innovative solutions to some of the most fundamental issues New Zealand faces in its future development. (more here)

  • Conduct regular reviews of the Resource Management Act to ensure that it is working as well as possible with regard to improving certainty, shortening timelines and reducing user costs
  • Encourage entrepreneurial activity, especially export orientation, assistance in export introductions, pooling of expertise, mentoring schemes, and introduction to funders all through a regionally available MED co-ordinated service that has minimal bureaucracy attached to it.
  • Support the retention of the Reserve Bank Act, the Fiscal Responsibility Act, the Public Finance Act in their current form (more available here)


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