An opinion piece in yesterday's DomPost by John Bishop hammers home the point: this government has given up on the Knowledge Wave and growth agenda. He has some excellent comparisons with Australia here too. Did you know that …
… if our annual GDP per capita growth had been one per cent better than it was, we would now be better off than Australia. To cut it another way: if we had only performed the same as Australia since then, the average New Zealander would now have about another $240 per week in their pocket." He's quoting Treasury head John Whitehead from a speeach in 2004.
John Key put it this way. "Over the period of the Labour Government, wages have risen twice as fast in Australia compared with New Zealand, and Australia has cut taxes regularly over the last nine years. The real wage differential, which was 20 per cent in 1999, is now 35 per cent," Mr Key told his audience. Each week 615 people are leaving to live overseas—mainly to Australia—and fewer are returning, according to the Labour Department's report on permanent and long-term migration, issued last week. The figure of 615 is up from a weekly average of 578 last year. The recent OECD report on New Zealand pinpointed "a large external deficit, very low household saving and still-strong inflation pressures indicat(ing) an unbalanced growth pattern".
Bishop arges that the government has given up on the knowledge economy, let alone reaching the top half of the OECD.
Good one John. Keep up the pressure.