Joyce on manufacturing
In January this year, Labour, Green, NZ First, and Mana parties held an inquiry (after the Parliamentary Finance Select committee rejected a request for a similar investigation) into the loss of 40,000 jobs from the manufacturing sector in the past four years.
Acknowledgement: Radio NZ – Exporters tell inquiry of threat from high dollar
In case anyone believes National’s claim that this was a “political stunt” (see: Opposition determined to manufacture a crisis), the comments from manufacturers who participated in the Inquiry took it deadly seriously. Whilst politicians like Joyce suckle on the tax-payer’s teat, exporters and manufacturers actually have to earn a living.
They were not impressed and made their feelings known;
“We’re told to get smarter and I find that irritating and insulting. I’m about as smart as they get in my little field. How the hell do these people get smarter? For a politician to tell somebody else to get smarter – he’s risking his life.”
A W Fraser;
“We know that – we’ve known that for a very, very long time. Of course we get efficient, of course we try and work as hard as we can to be efficient – it’s the only way we can exist. It drives me insane when people say, ‘Get efficient’. What do you think we are – idiots? We’re not.”
The Inquiry made its findings known;
Recommendation 1: The government adopt macroeconomic settings that are
supportive of manufacturing and exporting, including:
- a fairer and less volatile exchange rate through reforms to monetary
- refocusing capital investment into the productive economy, rather
than housing speculation;
- and lowering structural costs in the economy, such as electricity prices.
Recommendation 2: New Zealand businesses are encouraged to innovate.
Research and Development tax credits, with a stronger emphasis on
development, should be introduced as part of a package for innovative
manufacturing, supporting exports and quality jobs.
Recommendation 3: The Government adopt a national procurement policy
that favours Kiwi-made and ensures that New Zealand manufacturers enjoy
the same advantages as their international competitors.
Recommendation 4: The tax system is used to boost investment in new
technology and machinery. An accelerated depreciation regime should be
implemented for the manufacturing sector.
Recommendation 5: A wide range of funding is available for manufacturers to
invest in their business and employees. Measures to encourage the availability
of venture capital and mezzanine funding should be continued, including
government funds through commercial-managers.
Recommendation 6: Businesses are supported to achieve 21st Century
organisation and practices. Policies such as NZTE’s focus on Lean
Management, and the work of the High Performance Work Initiative should
be extended. Apprenticeship training support for the sector should be
Recommendation 7: Manufacturers are given a voice in FTA negotiations.
From the outset of FTA negotiations the interests of manufacturing must be
explicitly addressed. Negotiating teams must keep the sector informed.
Recommendation 8: Measures to encourage foreign direct investment in
manufacturers should be consistent with the strategic direction of New
Zealand’s manufacturing and exports.
Recommendation 9: Government should lower compliance costs wherever
they can be consistent with maintaining New Zealand’s values including
workers’ rights, environmental standards, and product quality assurance.
Recommendation 10: Manufacturing’s ability to create jobs and boost exports
should be recognised in national, regional and industry policies.
Recommendation 11: Taskforces of government local government,
businesses and unions, be established to assess and act on new business
and job opportunities in the wake of major closures or restructuring in the
For full details of each Recommendation, read the full report.
Source: Manufacturing Inquiry Report
Joyce’s response? There was no crisis.
“Labour, the Greens, New Zealand First and Mana are determined to manufacture a crisis in manufacturing. The massive problem for them is that while individual firms face real challenges at different times, no crisis exists.”
Acknowledgement: Scoop – Opposition determined to manufacture a crisis
Dear Leader also made the same astounding assertion,
“Quite honestly there is no manufacturing crisis in New Zealand; there are challenges for some manufacturers. ”
Acknowledgement: Fairfax Media – Opposition manufacturing inquiry report released
There we have it: no crisis exists.
40,000 jobs lost since 2008 – but Key and Joyce insist, no crisis exists.
It is the measure of this shonkey, incompetant, self-serving government that National ministers can deny the existence of a crisis when companies are folding and 40,000 people have lost their jobs.
I wonder if Key and Joyce’s attitude would be different if Labour were in power and 40,000 jobs had been lost in the last four years under theitr watch? Would they still insist there was no crisis exists ?
I think we all know the answer to that question.
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