= 1965 =
31 August 1965
New Zealand Australia Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is signed with Australia. It comes into force on 1 January 1966.
= 1972 =
20 October 1972
Accident Compensation Act creates ACC.
25 November 1972
Labour elected to office, 55 seats over National’s 35. (Election conducted under FPP)
22 December 1972
Last NZ military personnel withdrawn from South Vietnam. NZ toll in Vietnam War; 35 killed, 187 wounded.
Labour government, led by Norman Kirk, implements compulsory superannuation scheme.
= 1973 =
1 January 1973
Britain joins the EEC.
14 June 1973
Bill Rowling introduces short lived property speculation tax, on all properties held for less than two years. The tax is designed to discourage property speculation but is repealed in 1979.
First Oil Shock hits global economy.
14 November 1973
Domestic Purposes Benefit introduced for solo-parents and for those caring for a sick person in their home.
= 1974 =
31 August 1974
Prime Minister Norman Kirk dies, age 51.
21 September 1974
The franchise extended to citizens 18 and over.
= 1975 =
29 November 1975
Muldoon leads National to victory, 55 seats over Labour’s 32. (Election conducted under FPP)
= 1976 =
23 July 1976
New Zealand abandons compulsory superannuation by electing a Muldoon-led National Government that had promised to scrap it.
“In 1976, Rob Muldoon shut down the Norman Kirk Labour government’s Superannuation Corporation, a compulsory superannuation savings scheme that, had it lasted, would be worth about $240 billion today. “
= 1979 =
Second Oil Shock (Energy Crisis) begins.
= 1983 =
1 January 1983
The Australia and New Zealand Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement enters into force , aka CER, replacing the earlier New Zealand Australia Free Trade Agreement.
= 1984 =
14 July 1984
Prime Minister Mu;ldoon calls snap election. Labour beats National 56 seats to 37. Bob Jones’ New Zealand Party polls 12.2%, but wins no seats. (Election conducted under FPP)
8 November 1984
Finance Minister announces abolition of farming subsidies and import controls. GST (goods and services tax) introduced at 10%.
= 1985 =
4 March 1985
New Zealand dollar floated at initial rate US$0.4444 .
10 July 1985
Greenpeace ship “Rainbow Warrior” sunk in Auckland harbour by terrorists who were French agents.
= 1987 =
20 October 1987
Share market crashes.
= 1988 =
22 March 1988
State asset sales programme begins with sale of NZ Steel to Equiticorp.
= 1992 =
Australia implements compulsory superannuation scheme (currently worth an estimated A$1.12 trillion.)
National government implements students loans scheme for University students.
= 1998 =
Jenny Shipley-led National government mails out one million booklets, “Code of Social Responsibility” to every household in the country.
= 1999 =
27 November 1999
Fifth Labour Government, led by Helen Clark, elected into office.
= 2001 =
Air New Zealand re-nationalised by Labour government in $885 million rescue plan, with government taking a 76.5% stake.
29 November 2004
“Brash confirms National will keep superannuation fund”
“National leader Don Brash today confirmed four-day-old news that his party would keep the Cullen superannuation fund if elected to government… Dr Brash said the next National government would “retain” the fund. The policy is a U-turn on National’s position at the last election when it campaigned against the fund. “
= 2006 =
27 November 2006
John Key elected leader of the NZ National Party.
2 July 2007
Kiwisaver comes into operation.
7 August 2007
Beginnings of Global Financial Crisis
New Zealand December 2007 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey unemployment at 3.4% .
29 January 2008
John Key announces in speech, “A Fresh Start for New Zealand”,
“The National Party has an economic plan that will build the foundations for a better future.
* We will focus on lifting medium-term economic performance and managing taxpayers’ money effectively.
* We will be unrelenting in our quest to lift our economic growth rate and raise wage rates.
* We will cut taxes, not just in election year, but in a regular programme of ongoing tax cuts.
* We will invest in the infrastructure this country needs for productivity growth.
* We will be more careful with how we spend the cash in the public purse, monitoring not just the quantity but also the quality of government spending.
* We will concentrate on equipping young New Zealanders with the education they need for a 21st century global economy.
* We will reduce the burden of compliance and bureaucracy, and we will say goodbye to the blind ideology that locks the private sector out of too many parts of our economy.
* And we will do all of this while improving the public services that Kiwis have a right to expect. “
8 February 2008
“Cullen to Nats: will you borrow for tax cuts?”
“Dr Cullen said yesterday the Government was committed to a three-year programme of personal tax cuts which would meet four tests he has previously set out. The tests are that there is no borrowing, no cuts in services, no impact on inflation and that the tax cuts don’t lead to greater inequality. “
3 March 2008:
“New recession worry: Bank failures”
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., the federal agency that backs bank deposits, last week reported the biggest jump in “problem institutions” it has seen since the savings and loan crisis of the late 1980s. While the extent of the problem is still low by historic standards, it identified 76 banks as in trouble , a 52% increase from a year ago.
7 March 2008
“Government will not borrow for tax cuts”
“Government will not borrow for tax cuts. Those who would actively choose to drive New Zealand into further debt to pay for tax cuts lack real ambition for our economy, Finance Minister Michael Cullen said today. “
7 April 2008
“The miracle of full employment”
“For more than three years, New Zealand has lived an unemployment miracle. In February, Statistics NZ revealed that the unemployment rate had fallen to a record low of 3.4 per cent in the December 2007 quarter, ranking us fifth among the 27 OECD nations with comparable data (behind Norway, The Netherlands, South Korea and Denmark). The rate has hung below 4 per cent for more than three years as the insatiable economy has devoured the country’s dole queues.”
FTA between China and New Zealand
The New Zealand-China FTA was signed on 7 April 2008 in Beijing, after negotiations that spanned fifteen rounds over three years. It entered into force on 1 October 2008, after ratification by the New Zealand Parliament. The provisions of the agreement are expected to be phased in gradually over 12 years, fully coming into force in 2019.
18 May 2008
“Nats call for a delay to emission trading scheme law”
“National has called for a delay to the climate change emissions trading scheme (ETS) saying more care needs to be taken. National Leader John Key told the National Party Lower North Island Regional Conference that he still supported an ETS, but Labour had embarked on a rushed process that put New Zealand at risk. “We believe that the current rushed timetable for the design of the ETS and the select committee process is reckless, given the importance of the issue,” Mr Key said “Therefore, I’m calling for a delay in the passage of this legislation.” “
20 May 2008
“National’s 2005 tax cut plans still credible – Key”
“John Key… said National would be looking at economic figures and what other promises Dr Cullen made in the budget on Thursday… But he was “very confident” National could deliver an ongoing programme of tax cuts, like that promised in 2005. “
22 May 2008
Labour releases it’s 2008 Budget.
25 June 2008
“Emitters get ‘$1.4b corporate welfare’”
“Eight of the country’s largest industrial emitters are set to receive “corporate welfare” of at least $1.4 billion over the next 10 years, the Sustainability Council says. That is its term for the allocation of free emission units large trade-exposed emitters will get when they are brought into the emissions trading scheme from 2010 under the bill now before Parliament. It is intended to cover them collectively for 90 per cent of their 2005 on-site emissions and for 90 per cent of the ETS-related increase in their electricity costs. The electricity subsidy accounts for 85 per cent of the benefit to large emitters, the Sustainability Council’s executive director Simon Terry estimates. “
1 July 2008
Labour government buys back railways, and re-brands as Kiwirail.
13 July 2008
“Why the crisis of confidence at Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae?”
“Now, in the clearest sign yet of the nation’s deep financial troubles, investors fear that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — which exist to keep the mortgage market running smoothly — are sinking into the same credit crisis that claimed the corporate lives of Countrywide Financial, Bear Stearns and dozens of other institutions. “
2 August 2008
“Nats to borrow for other spending – but not tax cuts”
“National will fast track a second round of tax cuts and is likely to increase borrowing to pay for some of its spending promises, the party’s leader John Key says.
But Mr Key said the borrowing would be for new infrastructure projects rather than National’s quicker and larger tax cuts which would be “hermetically sealed” from the debt programme.
The admission on borrowing comes as National faces growing calls to explain how it will pay for its promises, which include the larger faster tax cuts, a $1.5 billion broadband plan and a new prison in its first term.
It has also promised to keep many of Labour’s big spending policies including Working for Families and interest free student loans.
Mr Key today said there would be “modest changes” to KiwiSaver. “
6 September 2008
“Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), James B. Lockhart III, announces decision to place two Government sponsored enterprises (GSEs), Fannie Mae (Federal National Mortgage Association) and Freddie Mac (Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation), into conservatorship run by the FHFA”.
15 September 2008
Lehman Brothers files for ‘Chapter 11′ bankruptcy protection.
“Russia halts trading after 17% share price fall”
“Russian shares suffered their steepest one-day fall in more than a decade on Tuesday, losing up to 20 per cent, as a sharp slide in oil prices and difficult money market conditions triggered a rush to sell.The heads of the Russian central bank, the finance ministry and the financial market regulator met on Tuesday night for an emergency discussion on ways to halt the crisis.”
26 September 2008
“Recession confirmed – GDP falls”
“GDP shrank 0.2 per cent in the June quarter, confirming what everyone already knew – that the country is in recession. The smaller than expected June quarter decline followed a fall of 0.3 per cent in the three months to March, so the country now meets the common definition of recession: two consecutive quarters of economic contraction. “
29 September 2008
“NZ Super Fund drops $880.75m “
“The fund set up to help out with New Zealand’s burgeoning pension bill has – as expected – lost money this year in the face of turbulent global markets.The New Zealand Superannuation Fund, which has been operating since 2003, had an after-tax loss of $880.75 million for the year to June, compared with a $1.09 billion profit last year. The result represented, pre-tax, a negative return of 4.92 percent. The before-tax loss was $716.46 million. “
4 October 2008
“Bush signs Wall Street bailout”
“Congress on Friday gave Wall Street the financial lifeline it was seeking and President Bush immediately signed it into law, as the House reversed course and approved a $700 billion bailout package in the wake of markets roiled by the failure of storied investment firms and major banks. “
6 October 2008
“Key: $30b deficit won’t stop Nats tax cuts?”
“John Key has defended his party’s planned program of tax cuts, after Treasury numbers released today showed the economic outlook has deteriorated badly since the May budget. The numbers have seen Treasury reducing its revenue forecasts and increasing its predictions of costs such as benefits. Cash deficits – the bottom line after all infrastructure funding and payments to the New Zealand Superannuation Fund are made – is predicted to blow out from around $3 billion a year to around $6 billion a year.”
7 October 2008
“Iceland: Icesave savers warned on accounts”
“Customers of the Icesave internet bank have been warned they will probably have to claim compensation for money held in their savings accounts. The authorities in the UK are preparing for the bank’s parent in Iceland, Landsbanki, to be declared insolvent. The Icelandic government took control of the country’s second biggest bank on Tuesday to keep it afloat. “
13 October 2008
UK intervenes to save banking system:
“UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown announces a government plan where the Treasury will invest £37 billion ($64 billion, €47 billion) of new capital into several major UK banks to avert a collapse of the financial sector. The banks include Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc, Lloyds TSB and HBOS Plc.”
Australia announces Bank Deposits Guarantee Scheme:
“THE Government will guarantee the $600-$700 billion deposits in Australian financial institutions in a move to shore up local confidence and protect the nation’s international competitiveness. Declaring that the country is in “the economic equivalent of a rolling national security crisis”, Kevin Rudd has also announced that all borrowing by Australian banks and other deposit-taking institutions from overseas will be guaranteed.”
New Zealand announces Bank Deposits Guarantee Scheme:
“National supports the Government’s plans to offer a guarantee of $150 billion in retail banking deposits… National leader John Key was briefed by Reserve Bank Governor Alan Bollard this afternoon about the plan after the Government announced the policy at the Labour Party campaign launch. “
20 October 2008
“National Party: Tax Policy”
“Our tax policy is therefore one of responsible reform… We have ensured that our package is appropriate for the current economic and fiscal conditions… This makes it absolutely clear that to fund National’s tax package there is no requirement for additional borrowing and there is no requirement to cut public services… National’s rebalancing of the tax system is self-funding and requires no cuts to public services or additional borrowing.’ “
8 November 2008
General Election held in New Zealand. National becomes government and forms National-ACT-Maori Party Coalition.
15 December 2008
“Redundancy package enough for 70,000 job losses – Govt”
“A package to assist those made redundant in the current economic turmoil will cost $50 million over two years if 70,000 people lose their jobs. The Government’s announcement of the economic assistance package today was almost identical to that outlined by National during the election campaign. The ‘ReStart’ package offers short-term help for up to 16 weeks to low and moderate income families with children, and to people with high housing costs. “
New Zealand December 2008 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey unemployed rises from 4.2% to 4.6% .
27 February 2009
“Job Summit: Key optimistic for ‘gritty’ New Zealand”
“Things will get worse but if Kiwis work together they can get through it, Prime Minister John Key said in the opening address of the jobs summit in Manukau City today… But the prime minister didn’t downplay the magnitude of the crisis that prompted the summit, saying, “The world is experiencing the most dramatic economic downturn we have seen in our lifetimes. “Unemployment will rise over the next year. We can all acknowledge that. But we can all play a part in lessening the blow.””
4 March 2009
“Minister warns ACC cuts loom”
“ACC entitlements are set to be cut in response to a blow out in treatment costs and swelling liabilities, ACC Minister Nick Smith said today… Dr Smith said if ACC was a commercial insurer it would be insolvent. “
6 March 2009
“Budget deficit worse than forecast; debt blows out by NZ$15.4 bln”
“The New Zealand government’s operating balance before gains and losses (OBEGAL) for the seven months ended January 31 was NZ$600 million, which was NZ$800 million below the pre-election update and NZ$300 million below December forecasts, Treasury said. Tax revenue and receipts during the period were NZ$500 million lower than the pre-election forecast. Meanwhile, Treasury also disclosed a NZ$15.4 billion rise in Gross Sovereign Issued Debt to NZ$45.4 billion (25.3% of GDP) from the pre-election forecast. This included fresh Reserve Bank bill issuance to mop up the liquidity from lending to the banks against securitised mortgages.”
12 March 2009
“Brian Fallow: ACC hostage to a changing world”
“For the Government to wrap legitimate concerns about slippage in ACC’s performance in a whole lot of shrill scaremongering and scapegoating is gratuitous.
Indeed it is downright irresponsible when talking about the scheme to use terms like “insolvent” and “going down the gurgler” – even if the context is counterfactual – because there are people who depend on it to keep body and soul together and will do for the rest of their days… But ACC is a civilised and cost-effective approach to dealing with the injured. Why undermine confidence in the scheme, unless you plan to undermine the scheme itself?”
“Insurance expert says ACC “ain’t broke””
“The Government says cuts are needed to ACC to bring ballooning liabilities and costs under control… However, independent consultant actuary Jonathan Eriksen, who runs Eriksen and Associates, said ACC was not a basket case; “it’s just another victim of the global depression that everyone is experiencing”.”
15 March 2009
“Rod Oram: ACC – the political claims and the reality”
“To make their case, the two politicians are flinging lots of scary numbers around. ACC has suffered a “very significant blowout in its liabilities” to $22 billion, the prime minister said on TV3 on Tuesday… But there is a huge gap between the rhetoric of John Key and Smith, and reality… So the government can only be taking its extreme line on ACC because it’s panicking or politicking.”
27 March 2009
“Jobs losses and shorter weeks announced at textile factories”
“More redundancies have been announced in the textile industry and the National Distribution Union (NDU) is calling for some textile companies to opt for the Government’s nine-day fortnight to save jobs. Pacific Brands announced yesterday it would end manufacturing at two of its plants, resulting in 38 job losses in Christchurch and 51 in Palmerston North. “
1 April 2009
“Rankin: Tax Cuts 2009-2011″
“Today, the first round of the National Government’s personal tax cuts became effective, along with the raised employee ACC employee levies.”
“Minimum wage to rise from $12 to $12.50 per hour”
11 April 2009
“Tax cuts not wanted if Govt has to borrow “
“Taxpayers do not want further tax cuts if they mean more government borrowing, a new survey shows. The survey comes as social welfare campaigners say tax cuts failed to help those most in need. The New Zealand Business Council for Sustainable Development survey found that while most people wanted tax cuts planned for 2010 and 2011, they did not want them if it meant further borrowing… The survey found most people would spend the tax cuts on living expenses, while others looked to credit-card debt and mortgage payments. “
7 May 2009
“Labour Budget pledges face axe”
Proposed spending increases in health and education by the Labour government are likely to be axed in the [National Government]Budget… The tax take has plummeted by $2b on October forecasts and is likely to continue to fall as company profits and consumer spending drop.
1 June 2009
General Motors files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
13 June 2009
Mount Albert by-election.
Vacated: Helen Clark (L)
Successful candidate: David Shearer (L)
25 June 2009
“10 applicants for every one shelf-stocking job”
“Any employment opportunity is being snapped up as the New Zealand job market continues to tighten, with a new supermarket in New Plymouth receiving almost 10 applications for every job available. Progressive Enterprises’ new Countdown store, which is due to open in a month’s time, has created 160 new jobs, but the grocery giant received more than 1100 applications for the position.”
28 July 2009
“Paula Bennett accused of Muldoon-style bullying”
“The Labour Party intends to lay a complaint with the privacy commissioner against Social Development Minister Paula Bennett for releasing income details of two beneficiaries. Ms Bennett released the income details of solo mothers Jennifer Johnston and Natasha Fuller after they publicly criticised the Government’s decision to scrap the training incentive allowance (TIA). Ms Fuller received $715 net a week and Ms Johnston $554, Ms Bennett’s office said. “
31 July 2009
“I’m entitled, says Douglas”
“Sir Roger Douglas says he is entitled to a holiday in Britain at the taxpayers’ expense. The ACT MP, who has been vocal in his demands for the Government to cut public spending and for Kiwis to tighten their belts during the recession, has one of the highest airfare bills among MPs. Figures released by Speaker Lockwood Smith yesterday show Douglas spent $44,411 on air travel in the first six months of this year – the most of any MP who is not a minister except Labour’s Chris Carter.”
1 August 2009
“English paid $1000 to live in own home”
“Taxpayers are contributing nearly $1000 a week to allow deputy prime minister Bill English to live in his own million-dollar Wellington home. The taxpayer subsidy is double what Mr English was able to claim last year when he was an Opposition MP, and comes as he calls for spending restraint and value for money in the public service. National is defending the payments as within the rules. ” “
17 August 2009
“Benefits of 50 to be scrutinised”
“Social Development Minister Paula Bennett says the incomes of some of the highest earning beneficiaries will be scrutinised. It follows the release of figures showing 307 beneficiaries are receiving over $1,000 a week. Ms Bennett has confirmed 50 will have their entitlements audited.”
9 September 2009
“Biosecurity cut backs leaves industry vulnerable”
“Government biosecurity cut backs leaves billion dollar industry vulnerable. The National Government’s decision to make more than 50 workers [redundant] whose job it is to protect New Zealand from biosecurity risks leaves this country’s primary production industries vulnerable, Labour Biosecurity spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.”
31 October 2009
“Hide says he’ll take girlfriend away again”
“Lapsed perkbuster Rodney Hide says he will use his MP’s travel expenses again to take his partner overseas. The Act leader was making no apologies yesterday for the public purse paying $25,163 for his partner, Louise Crome, to accompany him as Local Government Minister on a Super City fact-finding visit to Britain, Canada and the United States, and some domestic travel. “
New Zealand December 2009 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey unemployed rate rises to 7.3% .
18 January 2010
“Wood redundancies require a government response”
“Today’s 44 redundancies at Tangiwai Sawmill has prompted the union representing workers in the wood industries to call for more action from government to address the issues confronted by the sector. WPI has reduced its Tangiwai Mill workforce by 80, including today’s 26 voluntary and 18 compulsory redundancies. This follows the mothballing of its Prime Sawmill in Gisborne and 26 job losses at CHH’s Kawerau Sawmill, both announced late last year.”
28 January 2010
“Who pays the price of tax cuts for the rich?”
“There’s a lot to recommend the Tax Working Group’s 70-odd page report released last week, but for poor New Zealanders it represents another kick in the nethers at a time of rising unemployment… What the report effectively says is that because the poor can’t afford to move, can’t hire accountants to juggle their income and the like, they will be asked to pay a larger share. Their words are, “New Zealand’s tax base will need to be less reliant on internationally mobile factors such as incomes of capital and skilled labour”, but it amounts to the same thing. GST could go up, they suggest. Company tax should come down, they recommend. Cuts taxes for the top tax bracket, they advise, but not for the bottom. In short, the report concludes that the poor are trapped and therefore exploitable. It is, the TWG argues, only efficient. So much for all the talk of fairness and integrity.”
22 March 2010
“Govt announces mining plans”
“The government on Monday announced a proposal to open 7058 hectares of protected conservation land for mining – a figure leaked last week by Forest and Bird. The conservation society was also correct in assuming the government also planned to give a further 12,000 ha protected schedule four status as mitigation.”
17 April 2010
“$30m lost in halting payments to Cullen fund “
“Halting contributions to the Cullen superannuation fund has cost the taxpayer more than $30 million. If full contributions had been maintained, it would have earned almost $50m more, calculations based on the fund’s returns to the end of January show. Even accounting for the extra borrowing costs the Government would have faced to keep up contributions, that would still have netted taxpayers about $1m a week during the past eight months.”
1 May 2010
50,000 people march in Auckland to protest National’s proposal to mining in Schedule 4 DoC conservation lands.
10 June 2010
“300 jobs created across the Bay”
“The jobs are being welcomed by Bay job-hunters – about 1000 people applied for just 90 jobs at a new McDonald’s in Mount Maunganui, which is due to open next month… A “high volume” of people applied for jobs advertised with 1st Call [Employment Agency], with at least 100 people applying for each administrative role, Mr van Syp said.”
13 June 2010
“Big films cost NZ millions”
“Attempts to woo Hollywood film-makers have lost New Zealand tens of millions of dollars, confidential ministerial briefings say… A Cabinet paper prepared by Treasury in February and released to the Herald on Sunday under the Official Information Act, said subsidies for films such as Avatar and King Kong could not be economically justified. They had likely caused a net economic loss of $36 million… The Treasury says its findings “raise sufficient concern about the scheme’s value for ministers to approach any extension or reconfirmation of the grants with caution”… But Economic Development Minister Gerry Brownlee, who oversees the subsidies, attacked the report as uncreative and said he would ignore the advice. “No surprises there. Treasury has a generally bad attitude towards economic development of any type, particularly economic assistance,” he said. The makers of the world’s highest-grossing film, Avatar, received nearly $45m in subsidies. And producers of King Kong pocketed nearly $49m. “
30 June 2010
Net government debt, 2001 – Year Ended 30 June 2010
- Treasury Report: http://tinyurl.com/6jcexsf
- Graph: http://tinyurl.com/6b35jtl
1 July 2010
“Petrol prices rise as ETS starts to bite”
“All the major petrol companies have hiked their prices, as consumers start to feel the effects of the Emissions Trading Scheme… It estimates households will pay about $3 more a week or $165 a year, based on increases of 3.5 cents a litre for petrol and about 1.5c per kilowatt hour for electricity… Meanwhile, car and motorbike licences will start going up and ACC levies will increase. A licence for the average petrol-powered car increases by $30 as the ACC component of the licence fee goes up from $168.46 to $198.46, part of the Government’s changes it says are needed to meet the increased cost of claims. Motorbike owners face bigger increases ranging from $70 to $170 a year depending on the size of their bikes. On October 1 GST increases from 12.5 percent to 15 percent, raising the cost of nearly everything – however Prime Minister John Key says the vast bulk of New Zealanders will be better off because they are getting tax cuts worth $4.3 billion against a GST increase which will cost about $2 billion. “
20 July 2010
“Govt confirms no mining Schedule 4, national parks”
“The Government has confirmed its U-turn on mining protected conservation land at a press conference in Wellington this morning. Energy Minister Gerry Brownlee said the Government will not remove any land from Schedule 4 for the purposes of mining. The Government had proposed mineral exploration in 7000ha of conservation land in the Coromandel, Great Barrier Island and Paparoa National Park.”
5 August 2010
“Applicants queue for 20 jobs at new KFC store “
“Increased competition in Nelson’s job market saw more than 100 jobseekers pack out a room and queue at a Tahunanui tavern yesterday for one of up to 20 jobs at KFC’s new store. The first wave of a total 115 applicants was waiting outside a conference room at the Ocean Lodge before the midday start to the hiring open day yesterday, which was split between morning and afternoon segments. “
17 August 2010
“2700 applicants for 150 jobs”
“When a new supermarket opened today in Auckland it created 150 new jobs, but that was a small comfort for the 2550 people who applied for jobs there and missed out. Labour leader Phil Goff arrived in Wellington mid-morning today because he had been opening a New World supermarket in his Mt Roskill electorate.
The owner operator told Mr Goff 2700 people had applied for the 150 positions created in the new store. “
4 September 2010
7.1 earthquake hits Christchurch.
1 October 2010
“National Government implements second round of personal taxes reduce across the board, GST rises to 15 per cent, and NZ Superannuation, Working for Families, and benefit payments increase to compensate for the rise in GST.”
“Jackson Speaks on Actor Boycott of ‘The Hobbit’ “
““The Hobbit is being punished with a boycott which is endangering thousands of NZ jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars of foreign income, for no good reason.””
“‘Unrealistic’ workloads on civil servants after cuts”
“Public servants are struggling to cope with “unrealistic” workloads as almost 5000 jobs are cut or vacant, a union says. More than 2000 positions have been cut from the core public service since the Government capped numbers soon after it came to power… Latest figures from the State Services Commission show the number of fulltime staff positions in the core government administration was 36,771 at June 30 – about 2100 fewer than when the cap was imposed. But Public Service Association national secretary Brenda Pilott said figures from June 30 show there are 2645 vacancies. “The vacancies, along with the job losses, amount to 4733 public service positions,” she said. ” “
New Zealand December 2010 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey unemployed rate rises by 0.4 percentage points to 6.8% .
27 October 2010
“Govt mulls employment law changes in bid to save Hobbit”
“Prime Minister John Key and a team of senior ministers met Warner Brothers’ executives for more than two hours yesterday without resolving the problems that have made the movie company consider taking the $630 million production to another country… “They’re not here with a ransom note, or putting a gun to our head…but they’re out of here if we can’t give them clarity, no question about that”… Although the Government appears willing to change labour laws to clear up the problem over contractors and employees, it isn’t going to increase the 15 percent tax break for big movies.”
“Hobbit movies to be made in New Zealand”
“Prime Minister John Key this evening announced an agreement has been reached between the New Zealand Government and Warner Bros that will enable the two Hobbit movies to be directed by Sir Peter Jackson to be made in New Zealand… As part of the arrangement the Government will introduce legislation in Parliament tomorrow to clarify the distinction between independent contractors and employees as it relates to the film production industry. It is this clarification that will guarantee the movies are made in New Zealand… The impact of this will mean an additional rebate for The Hobbit movies of up to US$7.5 million per picture, subject to the success of those movies… The Government will offset US$10 million of Warner Bros marketing costs as part of the strategic partnership.”
Hon DAVID CUNLIFFE (Labour—New Lynn) to the Minister of Finance: Why did he continue with his 2010 tax cuts when the Government has a cash deficit of $9 billion?
Hon BILL ENGLISH (Minister of Finance) : Because the package of tax cuts will lift New Zealand’s rate of growth by improving the incentives to work, to save, to invest, and to export, and to help a much-needed rebalancing of this economy. The tax changes have little bearing on the Government’s cash deficit, as they are broadly fiscally neutral, and are revenue-positive by the end of the forecast period and in future years. Of course, they will leave the vast majority of New Zealanders a bit better off.
20 November 2010
Vacated: Winnie Laban (L)
Successful candidate: Kris Faafoi (L)
30 November 2010
Kiwisaver total membership (net of opt outs and closures): 1,590,887
8 December 2010
“Cycleway jobs fall short”
“The national cycleway has so far generated just 215 jobs – well short of Prime Minister John Key’s expectation of 4000. In May, Mr Key said he expected the $50 million project, which involves building 18 cycleways throughout the country, to generate 4000 jobs.”
14 December 2010
“Chinese firm beats Hillside to KiwiRail contract”
“Dunedin’s Hillside Workshops has missed out on a contract to build 300 wagons for KiwiRail because its bid was 25% more expensive than a Chinese rival.”
17 December 2010
“Dunne defends Greymouth IRD job cuts announcement”
“Revenue Minister Peter Dunne has defended the timing of yesterday’s announcement that eight jobs are to be cut at the Inland Revenue Department in Greymouth. Grey District Mayor Tony Kokshoorn said the timing could not be worse, coming before Christmas and quick on the heels of the redundancies of 114 Pike River Mine employees following the explosions which killed 29 men. “
21 December 2010
“Sir Peter: Actors no threat to Hobbit”
“Sir Peter Jackson told the Government he did not believe an international actors’ boycott would force The Hobbit overseas, emails show. The message, sent to the office of Economic Development Minister Gerry Brownlee on October 18, is in stark contrast to comments the film-maker made earlier in the month. On October 1, he said: “The Hobbit is being punished with a boycott which is endangering thousands of New Zealand jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars of foreign income, for no good reason.” “
New Zealand December 2010 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey unemployment at 6.8% .
3 January 2011
“Key says he’ll quit politics if National loses election”
“Prime Minister John Key has all but confirmed that the general election will be in late November or early December and he has indicated he will leave politics if he cannot lead the country to a second term in Government… “I don’t think it suits me as a person. I’m not a negative person and a lot of Opposition is negative.” “
9 January 2011
“Taxpayers fork out big bucks to movie studios”
“The taxpayer bankrolled blockbuster film and TV productions to the tune of $75 million over the past two years – with most of that going to US studio giants 20th Century Fox, Paramount and Disney. Avatar, District 9, Tintin, The Lovely Bones and children’s TV show The Wot Wots were all awarded cash under the Large Budget Screen Production Grant scheme in the 2009-2010 financial year. In this financial year $23m was paid out for Yogi Bear, The A-Team and TV show Spartacus. Demand for the grants was so great the Ministry of Economic Development blew out its $35.5m budget and had to request a $16.9m top-up last February. The scheme offers a 15% rebate on production spending in New Zealand above $15m. To get its $52.9m grant, Avatar makers had to guarantee spending $362.75m here, and Yogi Bear $41.5m. More than $245m has been paid out since the grants were set up in 2003. “
28 January 2011
“Cullen fund helps Government books”
“The benefits of the New Zealand Superannuation (Cullen) Fund investing in sharemarkets shone through clearly yesterday with the release of the Government’s financial performance. Treasury documents showed the operating deficit for the five months ended November was $2.3 billion lower than expected at $2.5 billion, due mainly to the Cullen fund recording gains above forecast of more than $1 billion. “
2 February 2011
Prime Minister John Key announces the election will be held on November 26.
15 February 2011
“Brand new BMWs for Govt ministers”
“The Government is selling its three-year-old fleet of 34 luxury limos and replacing them with new BMWs, which the Green Party says is an outrageous expense when ministers are telling everyone else to tighten their belts. “
17 February 2011
“Food parcel families made poor choices, says Key”
“Prime Minister John Key says beneficiaries who resort to food banks do so out of their own “poor choices” rather than because they cannot afford food. “But it is also true that anyone on a benefit actually has a lifestyle choice. If one budgets properly, one can pay one’s bills. “And that is true because the bulk of New Zealanders on a benefit do actually pay for food, their rent and other things. Now some make poor choices and they don’t have money left.” “
“New BMW fleet ‘not a great look’ – Key”
“The Government should have known about the purchase of 34 new BMW limousines for ministers, but Prime Minister John Key learned of the multimillion-dollar deal from his chauffeur last week… Mr Key said he was “surprised” the department had not run it by him or other ministers. “Politically we should have known about it, but we didn’t.” “
“Govt backtracks on limo statements”
“The Government has backtracked on previous statements that it knew nothing about a decision to replace its three-year-old BMWs with new ones… Prime Minister John Key yesterday said the Government had not been kept in the loop about the decision, and that a six-year deal for the cars was signed by Labour with a three-year rollover clause… However, answering on behalf of Mr Key in Parliament today, Gerry Brownlee admitted ministers had been informed following the department’s decision.”
21 February 2011
“No cuts to welfare payments, Key says “
“The Welfare Working Group’s final report will be released tomorrow, giving the Government possible solutions to long-term dole dependency. Prime Minister John Key today said the Government would not consider reductions to main benefit levels, including the sickness, invalid’s, unemployment and domestic purposes benefits. “We do not expect the group to make recommendations to that effect,” he said. “
“PM adviser knew of BMWs months ago”
“Email correspondence has revealed one of the Prime Minister’s key advisers was aware of the controversial BMW purchase seven months ago.John Key has previously said he never knew about the agreement until he was informed by his limo driver a week before the revelations were made. However, correspondence released today shows Key’s chief of staff, Wayne Eagleson, was in discussions with Ministerial Services about the BMW contract in July last year.”
22 February 2011
“Extensive welfare shake-up needed: report”
“More than three quarters of all beneficiaries will be forced to seek work or face cuts to their payments under sweeping recommendations from the Government’s Welfare Working Group… Working group chairwoman, economist Paula Rebstock, said the present high levels of welfare dependency meant major changes were needed. ”There are currently few incentives and little active support for many people reliant on welfare to move into paid work. Long term benefit dependency can be avoided if investments are well targeted and timely… Social Development Minister Paula Bennett said the report was an opportunity to change the welfare system and would feed into Government work in the area. “
6.3 Earthquake hits Christchurch
1 March 2011
“Carter outlines ETS challenge”
“New Zealand farmers should expect to come into the emissions trading scheme (ETS) on schedule in 2015, depending on trade implications. Agriculture Minister David Carter said the scheme was about sending signals for behavioural change. “The challenge for us is when do we bring in the ETS? It is legislated for 2015. We’re doing a review now to see whether that is the appropriate date, or if it should be delayed.” “
5 March 2011
Vacated: Pansy Wong (N)
Successful candidate: Jami-Lee Ross (N)
9 March 2011
“Government denies MediaWorks loan”
“Struggling media company MediaWorks is up-to-date with its broadcasting licence payments and has not received a bail-out loan from the Government, Communications Minister Steven Joyce says… The statement said the debt was a loan from the Government, but Mr Joyce today said no payment had been made to the company and the $43m was actually money owed under a 2009 scheme that allows broadcasters to defer licence payments.”
15 March 2011
“Thirty-five jobs may go at Niwa”
“Thirty-five jobs may be up for the chop but affected staff are being consulted before any decisions, the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (Niwa) says… “Niwa employs about 730 scientific and administration staff at 15 sites throughout New Zealand and about 35 positions are being reviewed, of which about half are back-office support roles and half are science roles.” “
23 March 2011
“NZ Superannuation Fund shows strong performance”
“The $19 billion New Zealand Superannuation Fund is having a strong year to the end of February, but that was before the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis hit Japan. New Zealand’s retirement nest egg made a 3 per cent return in February, with a strong rally in world sharemarkets, taking its financial year-to-date return to 22.5 per cent. “
10 April 2011
“China flights a $75m boost “
“Tourism New Zealand has entered a joint marketing agreement with China Southern and each will contribute up to $4 million over the next three years to promote travel here for business and leisure. The Chinese airline has also committed to extensive marketing of New Zealand in Guangzhou. “This is a huge development, with Auckland Airport advising the service is expected to bring an additional 25,000 visitors per year to New Zealand and generate $75 million to the New Zealand economy,” said Key. “
- http://tinyurl.com/68zsxra (dead link)
“Low wages ‘advantage’ for NZ – English”
“Finance Minister Bill English has come under fire for saying low wages in New Zealand help it compete with neighbouring Australia… Speaking on TVNZ’s Q + A programme this morning, English defended his comment as a statement of fact. “Well, it’s a way of competing, isn’t it? I mean, if we want to grow this economy, we need the capital – more capital per worker – and we’re competing for people as well,” he said. “… we need to get on with competing with Australia. So if you take an area like tourism, we are competing with Australia. We’re trying to get Australians here instead of spending their tourist dollar in Australia.” Lower wages were not a good thing but they were a fact, English said. “We want to close that gap up, and one way to close that gap up is to compete… if I go to Australia and talk to Australians, I want to put to them a positive case for investment in New Zealand, because while we are saving more, we’re not saving more fast enough to get the capital that we need to close the gap with Australia. “So Australia already has $40 billion of investment in New Zealand. If we could attract more Australian companies, activities here, that would help us create the jobs and lift incomes.” “
12 April 2011
“Union calls PM out on wage increase figures”
“Speaking at a leadership forum at the weekend, Mr English said the fact New Zealand wages were 30 percent behind Australia’s meant there was an advantage in luring jobs and capital. Mr Key has defended Mr English’s comments but says the Government is still aiming at reducing the gap. “The Government remains committed to closing the wage gab with Australia. The significant amount of Australia’s higher wages come from there ability to harness minerals.”
30 April 2011
Don Brash becomes leader of ACT New Zealand.
10 May 2011
“Govt borrowing $380m a week”
“The Government is borrowing $380 million a week and next week’s budget will carry a record deficit of about $16 billion, Parliament was told today. Finance Minister Bill English said the Government’s financial position had deteriorated “significantly” since late 2008. “The pre-election update in 2008 forecast that the deficit for this year would be $2.4 billion,” he said. “It’s much more likely to be around $15b or $16b.” “
11 May 2011
“Key announces cuts to government annual tax credit for KiwiSaver, but will leave NZ$1,000 kickstart unchanged.”
“Prime Minister John Key has announced the government will reduce its annual matching tax credit contributions for KiwiSaver of NZ$1,042 per person, but will continue to offer the NZ$1,000 kickstart contribution for new KiwiSavers.”
“PM rejects claim donation linked to BMW upgrade”
“Prime Minister John Key says he has no responsibility for a $50,000 donation made to the National Party by a BMW dealership the day after the Government renewed its VIP transport contract… On Wednesday, Labour MP Chris Hipkins asked Mr Key in Parliament if he was aware that the day after his chief of staff met with VIP transport to discuss the upgrade that Team McMillan, a BMW dealership in Auckland made a donation to National. Mr Key replied he had no responsibility for that. He said BMW New Zealand is not the same entity as the one named by Mr Hipkins.”
“Goodbye Shell – hello Z Energy”
“After one of the biggest consumer surveys in the past decade Shell’s New Zealand owners have ditched the global brand and gone to the end of the alphabet and will rebrand its service stations Z Energy… Shell’s service stations and other assets were bought last year by the New Zealand Superannuation Fund and Wellington-based infrastructure company Infratil through Greenstone Energy for $695 million.”
12 May 2011
“Dealer denies donation link”
“A private BMW dealer has rubbished the suggestion that a $50,000 donation from his company to the National Party had anything to do with the Government’s new fleet of BMW cars… It was a month after a function that Mr Key attended at Auckland BMW dealership Team McMillan… He said the function was not for fundraising, but he was a “strong supporter” of Mr Key and some customers decided to contribute to a Team McMillan donation.’ “
13 May 2011
“Colour us red – how deep in debt is NZ really?”
“We are up to our collective nostrils in debt…
… At the end of 2010, the latest figures available, our gross external liabilities were $312 billion. Four-fifths of that was debt rather than equity and three-quarters of the debt had been incurred by banks. On the other side of the the ledger, New Zealanders held $152 billion of assets abroad, of which 38 per cent was equity. So the country is a net debtor to the tune of $159 billion (or $36,000 per capita), of which the banks account for 73 per cent. “
“Dealer who gave Nats $50k eyes Govt BMWs”
“A private dealer is interested in buying the Government’s ministerial BMWs when they come up for sale, but rejects the suggestion that a $50,000 donation will sweeten its chances. It was revealed this week that Team McMillan, a BMW dealer in Auckland, donated $50,000 to the National Party last July, after holding a fundraiser function which Prime Minister John Key attende”
“NZ Post shutting stores, axing jobs”
“NZ Post is shutting seven stores, and seven others will be rebranded as PostCentres, the company announced this morning. The changes are expected to affect 90 staff, although the number of redundancies remains unclear. “
19 May 2011
“Budget 2011: Govt announces it will contest election on selling 49% of SOE power companies, Air NZ shares down to 51% holdings”
Total Personal Taxable Income Contributed To Each Income Band: The following table shows the total amount of taxable income all individuals contribute to each taxable income band, for the 2011/2012 tax year.
23 May 2011
“Demand Strong for New Jobs Up for Grabs in Glenfield”
“Applications have flooded in from jobseekers hoping to be a part of the new Bunnings Warehouse team in Glenfield. Advertisements were placed one week ago for the 124 jobs in sales, administration, customer-service and trade specialist areas, and over 1500 applications have been received so far. Complex Manager Derek Powell says that people from all backgrounds have applied for the roles, and that the positions suit those with a background or interest in customer service, retail or the building trades. “
“Lifting minimum wage ‘would cost 6000 jobs’ “
“Employers and the Government have hit back at Labour’s plan to raise the minimum wage to $15, claiming it would cost 6000 jobs… Prime Minister John Key said the Labour Department had calculated a lift to $15 an hour would cost 6000 jobs. “Labour has learnt absolutely nothing in 2 1/2 years. This is the same prescription that got us into trouble.” “
“Budget’s sword swings its way through families’ cost of living “
“The Working for Families changes impact on households with incomes as low as $35,000. Yes, it costs $2.8 billion a year, but it is in effect a tax cut aimed at those who need it most. Rolling back this tax cut but leaving in place the cuts last year which cost $5b, with 42 per cent of them accruing to the top 10 per cent of income earners, is obscene… The unsuccessful tax switch (we called it a “tax swindle” at the time) last year was not fiscally neutral as was claimed. There is a $1.4b revenue hole.”
28 May 2011
ACT NZ confirms John Banks as it’s next candidate for Epsom electorate.
3 June 2011
“Buy state-asset shares or foreigners will”
“Shares in state assets will go to foreign owners if Kiwis are not prepared to front up and buy them, Finance Minister Bill English has warned… “We are saying that New Zealanders are at the front of the queue, but if not enough of them show up, it won’t be 49 per cent,” he told a Waikato business audience. “I wouldn’t want to exactly guarantee every share but we have got to look at how to make that happen.” Locals would be interested in the sales, expected to raise up to $7 billion, because they had been “burned with other less reliable investments” – a reference to the $8.5b lost through the collapse of finance companies. “
6 June 2011
“ACT group blasted over Facebook link”
“The ACT Party’s youth division has caused online outrage after posting a quote comparing compulsory union membership to gang rape. “
7 June 2011
“Deficit to hit $16.7 billion this year”
“The government’s operating deficit before gains and losses is expected to reach around $16.7 billion for the year to June 30, as forecast in the budget last month, according to Finance Minister Bill English. This is despite core Crown expenses coming in $525 million below forecast for the 10 months to April 30, leaving the OBEGAL (operating balance excluding gains and losses) deficit at $10.9 billion for the 10 months.”
“Government debt rises to $71.6 billion”
“The Government is practising “good cash management” by borrowing an extra $5 billion this year to take advantage of low interest rates despite gross debt hitting $71.6b, a senior economist says.
Treasury today published the Government’s financial statements for the 10 months ended April 30, which showed the debt mountain had grown to $71.6b. “
9 June 2011
“KiwiRail under fire over job cuts”
“KiwiRail is under attack after slashing jobs at two of its workshops and a design centre. Forty positions will go in Dunedin and about another 30 in the capital, under KiwiRail’s proposals… Dunedin lobbied hard for the work and Mayor Dave Cull is angry. “This is frankly a form of economic vandalism. What are we mounting here? An economic development strategy for China,” Cull said. “
18 June 2011
“Christchurch “Will Need Immigrant Workers” To Rebuild “
“Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee agrees immigrants will be needed to rebuild Christchurch. Speaking today on TV3’s “The Nation” Mr Brownlee said the Government would first look at immigrants who could speak English “but that doesn’t restrict the need”.”
19 June 2011
“Financial woes keep growing”
“People’s confidence in their financial prospects has plummeted just five months out from the general election, with a new poll showing people are worried they will lose their jobs and that things will get worse in the next year. “
22 June 2011
“Chch rebuild companies will have to find skilled workers – English”
“Companies that expect to be involved in rebuilding Christchurch will be responsible for ensuring they have the skilled workers they need, Finance Minister Bill English said… “Of course it will be tight, because they are competing with very, very large salaries, particularly those in Western Australia where something like $250 billion worth of capital projects are in the pipeline,” Mr English said… The latest migration statistics, released yesterday, showed a net outflow of 3300 migrants to Australia last month, up from 1700 in May 2010 and higher than the previous May record of 2900 in 1979.”
23 June 2011
“Morale slumps as job cuts hit Defence Force”
About 1000 uniformed staff in all [Defence Force ] three services, many of them in Wellington, would be affected by the civilianisation process, which is designed to save up to $40 million a year on payroll costs… Defence Minister Wayne Mapp said the civilianisation process, which was most likely to hit people toward the end of their military careers, was causing uncertainty. “
“Crown to buy 5100 quake-hit Christchurch homes”
National Government release Christchurch relief package.
24 June 2011
“DOC to axe Wellington jobs”
Dept of Conservation announces 102 staff to be made redundant.
“Contract with consultant revealed as job cuts loom”
“A private consultant awarded a $54,135 contract for two months’ work says he was given the job because of “staffing gaps” at the Foreign Affairs and Trade Ministry… The disclosure came as chief executive John Allen revealed the department aimed to “slim down” by 200 staff. “
“ACC levies to be reduced”
“Workers and businesses will get a reduction in their ACC levies after the corporation – labelled insolvent by the Government two years ago – bounced back with an expected $2.5 billion surplus this financial year. ACC Minister Nick Smith said the surplus was $1.5b greater than the budget projection. It followed a surplus of $2.5b in the last financial year after losses of $4.8 million in 2008-09 and $2.4b in 2007-08. “
25 June 2011
Te Tai Tokerau by-election.
Vacated: Hone Harawera (Mana)
Successful candidate: Hone Harawera (Mana)
26 June 2011
“Harawira has ‘reduced mandate’ – PM “
“Hone Harawira “cannot really claim victory” in the Tai Tokerau by-election because of a “very reduced mandate,” Prime Minister John Key says. En route to India this morning, Key spoke to reporters in Darwin, Australia. He said most people would think the by-election had been “an expensive waste of time”. “We’ve spent hundreds of thousands of tax-payer dollars and we’ve ended up in the same position that we started in,” Key said. “It’s not like really, Hone Harawira can claim victory. This is a very reduced mandate.” “
5 July 2011
“Capital gains speculation over Labour tax policy “
“Labour leader Phil Goff has confirmed his party will release its flagship tax policy within the next two weeks, but has refused to rule in or out any measures ahead of the announcement. Speculation has centred around either a capital gains tax or a land tax to help the party pay for its policies. “
8 July 2011
“Deutsche, Craigs win mandate for advice on NZ asset sales”
“(BusinessDesk) – The New Zealand government has hired Deutsche Bank and local affiliate Craigs Investment Partners as financial advisers on the sale of four state-owned companies that may reap as much as $7 billion. The government detailed its intention to sell down its holdings in power companies Meridian Energy, Genesis Energy and Mighty River Power, coal miner Solid Energy and national carrier Air New Zealand in its May budget. “
9 July 2011
ACT advert runs in the Weekend Herald yesterday asking: “Fed up with pandering to Maori radicals?”
12 July 2011
“ACC levy cuts will save $587m “
ACC Minister Nick Smith announces cuts to ACC premiums.
“TVNZ charter extinguished”
“Television New Zealand’s controversial charter has been finally extinguished through a bill passed by Parliament tonight. The Government announced in 2009 it was going to can the charter, which encouraged TVNZ to screen programmes which reflected New Zealand’s culture and way of life. “
13 July 2011
“Brash tries to attract Maori candidates”
“ACT leader Don Brash has tried and failed to woo Maori candidates to the party’s list. “
14 July 2011
“90 fraud charges laid in LWR collapse”
“The Serious Fraud Office has charged former Lane Walker Rudkin Industries (LWR) director Ken Anderson with 82 counts of fraud involving $118 million.The charges against Anderson and another person who has name suppression follow the SFO’s probe into the collapse of LWR, the Canterbury clothing manufacturer two years ago.Sixty-one of the charges against Anderson, 64, relate to allegations that he fabricated financial documents in order to obtain and retain lending facilities from Westpac bank. ‘
“Labour confirms capital gains tax, new rate “
“Labour has confirmed it will introduce a capital gains tax at 15 per cent and a new top tax rate of 39 per cent on income above $150,000… There would be a tax free threshhold at $5000 and GST would be taken off fresh fruit and vegetables. ut someone on $175,000 a year would pay $975 more a year, and someone on $200,000 would pay $2475 more in tax.The CGT will exclude the family home and is estimated to raise $78m in the first year rising to $2.27 billion by year 10. “
17 July 2011
“Latest poll shows Labour struggling”
“A TVNZ Colmar Brunton poll released… shows support for Labour at a 10-year low, down seven points to 27 per cent. It was taken after information about Labour’s policy had been leaked to the media and made public. “
18 July 2011
“Inflation hits 21-year high “
“Inflation has hit the highest level in a generation, with increases in petrol and last year’s rise in GST causing the consumer price index to climb by 5.3 per cent over the last 12 months. This morning Statistics New Zealand said the CPI increased by 1 per cent in the three months to June 30, boosted mainly by record high fuel prices and increases in the cost of food. “
4 August 2011
“Jobless rate holds at 6.5 per cent”
“Statistics NZ figures just out show the unemployment rate was 6.5 per cent in the June quarter, flat on the previous period, but the number of people in work rose slightly. The number of people without work was unchanged at 154,000 while the number of people with a job grew by 1,000, Statistics NZ said. “
“IRD cuts jobs in regional offices”
“191 staff are set to lose their jobs at the Inland Revenue Department. Inland Revenue has begun consulting staff in Rotorua, New Plymouth, Napier, Nelson and Invercargill who will be affected.”
6 August 2011
Standard & Poors downgrades US credit rating from AAA to AA+ .
23 August 2011
“Asset sales may prop up cost of expressway”
John Key confirms that proceeds of partial asset-sales could be used for roading projects.
24 August 2011
“More than 140 MAF staff to lose jobs”
“More than 140 staff at the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry are expected to lose their jobs today. Public Services Association national secretary Richard Wagstaff said about 241 positions were being lost, but up to 97 of those were already vacant. “
“Power prices nearly double since 2000″
” Figures issued by the Domestic Electricity Users Network show power prices increased by 87% between 2000 – 2011. Previous figures showed prices rose by almost 69% between 2000 – 2009.”
6 September 2011
“Gun charges against Urewera accused dropped”
“The Crown has dropped charges against 11 of the Urewera 15 who were charged following the 2007 “terror raids”.”
7 September 2011
“DOC confirms 96 jobs to go”
“The Conservation Department has confirmed it will cut 96 jobs over the next six months in a restructuring aimed at saving $7.5 million. “
24 September 2011
ACT Deputy Leader, John Boscawen, announces he will step down from #2 position on ACT Party List.
30 September 2011
Fitch cuts NZ rating to AA from AA-plus.
Credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s cuts NZ rating from AA+ to AA.
3 October 2011
“Downgrades unlikely to raise mortgage rates – Key”
- “They’re saying overall the situation is that, because we’re such a good credit and because this is wholesale around the world, S&P have downgraded about eight or nine countries already, they think we’ll actually attract capital, so [mortgage rate rises are] unlikely in the short term.” – John Key
4 October 2011
“Prime Minister John Key is being accused of misleading New Zealanders by telling Parliament an international credit ratings agency said a downgrade would be more likely if there was a change of government.”
- TV3, http://tinyurl.com/44p5psk
- Hansards, http://tinyurl.com/3kmgnyq
5 October 2011
At 2.20 am, the 47,000 tonne container ship Rena ran aground on the Astrolabe reef 12 nautical miles from Tauranga in the Bay of Plenty. The vessel carried 1700 tonnes of fuel oil, 200 tonnes of diesel and 1386 containers.
10 October 2011
Pumping of oil from the grounded Rena, to a fuel barge began, but the barge returned to Tauranga after sustaining damage and pumping 10 tonnes of fuel oil.
26 October 2011
“Moody’s says no change to rating”
“Rating agency Moody’s has confirmed New Zealand’s AAA credit rating and said the Treasury’s pre-election economic and fiscal update on Tuesday was largely in line with expectations.”
11 November 2011
John Key and John Banks meet at Urban Cafe in Epsome for “cuppa tea”.
26 November 2011
- General Election
- Referendum on MMP
27 November 2011
* National wins 60 seats in election; Key claims victory.
* MMP retained.
29 November 2011
Phil Goff and Annette King anounce decisions to stand down as leader/deputy leader of Labour Party, on 13 December.
30 November 2011
Police serve search warrant and raid offices of Radio NZ searching for “Teapot Tape” of Banks and Key meeting in Epsom, earlier this month.
5 December 2011
ACT-National Coalition deal announced.
Peter Dunne-National coalition announced.
10 December 2011
Official election and referendum results released by Electoral Commission.
11 December 2011
Maori Party announce Supply & Confidence deal with National.
13 December 2011
David Shearer announced as new leader of Labour Party.
New Zealand December 2011 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey unemployed at 6.3% (150,000).
= 2012 =
27 January 2012
Government announces that it will consent to OIO decision to sell 16 Crafar Farms to Shanghai Pengxin.
10 February 2012
“Banks take $3b profit overseas”
“Higher interest margins saw the big five banks take a combined profit of $3 billion over the 2011 financial year, most of it headed to Australian bank coffers. Bank profits were up 18 per cent year on year and 26 per cent higher in the second half of the year than the first, according to a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers.”
15 February 2012
High Court delays sale of Crafar farms to Shanghai Pengxin.
16 February 2012
John Banks appointed as ACT’s new Leader.
7 March 2012
Ports of Auckland Ltd makes 292 port workers redundant.
9 March 2012
National introduces legislation to part-privatise state-owned assets; Mighty River Power, Genesis, Meridian, Solid Energy, and Air New Zealand.
19 March 2012
Fonterra distributes free milk for school students.
21 March 2012
Nick Smith resigns ministerial portfolios over Bronwyn Pullar letters to ACC.
22 March 2012
Parliament narrowly passes controversial Search and Surveillance Bill. Bill passed by 61 votes to 57.
5 April 2012
ACT MP John Banks accused of failing to declare a $15,000 donation from SkyCity in his return for Auckland’s mayoral election – Labour’s deputy leader, Grant Robertson
20 April 2012
Government ministers , Land Information Minister Maurice Williamson and Associate Finance Minister Jonathan Coleman approve the Overseas’ Investment Office’s (OIO) new recommendation to allow the purchase of the 16 Crafar farms to Shanghai Pengxin.
29 April 2012
Social Welfare minister admits on TVNZ Q+A, ” No. There’s not a job for everyone that would want one right now, or else we wouldn’t have the unemployment figures that we do. “
3 May 2012
New Zealand March 2011 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey unemployed at 6.7%
24 May 2012
Budget 2012 released by Bill English.
7 June 2012
National backs down from increasing classroom sizes and cutting teacher numbers.
26 June 2012
National, ACT, and Peter Dunne vote to pass legislation permitting partial privatisation of Mighty River Power, Genesis, Meridian, Solid Energy, and Air New Zealand.
1 July 2012
TVNZ7 closes down.
26 July 2012
Police announce that they will not be prosecuting John Banks for irregularities over his campaign donation returns.
9 August 2012
Unemployment rises to 6.8%.
15 August 2012
Human Rights Commission finds that Welfare Minister Paula Bennett violated privacy of solo-mother, Natasha Fuller.
28 August 2012
“Report: Parents should get ‘child payment’”
Children’s Commissioner Russell Wills releases report on poverty in New Zealand.
“Beneficiary drug testing plans unveiled”
Welfare Minister Paula Bennett releases plans to carry out “robust clinical assessments” to determine whether beneficiaries are recreational drug users or are drug addicts, under Government plans to screen job seekers.
“Key rejects report as working poor struggle”
John Key rejects report on poverty, from Children’s Commissioner Russell Wills.
“1000 march for same-sex marriage”
“Hundreds of mine jobs face axe”
The axe hangs over hundreds of mining jobs today, with state-owned Solid Energy poised to reveal the fate of two of its mines as it moves to slash costs.
3 September 2012
John Key announces delay of state asset-sales to March/June next year.
17 September 2012
Social Development Minister Paula Bennett’s introduces Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work focus) Amendment Bill to Parliament.
24 September 2012
Key discloses that GCSB has been spying on NZ resident, Kim Dotcom.
10 October 2012
National announces that youth minimum wage will be set at 80% of adult wage, ie; $10.80/hr, from 1 April 2013.
5 November 2012
Royal Commission on Pike River Mine Disaster releases report.
Mines Minister, Kate Wilkinson resigns, over Pike River Mine report.
Electoral Commission’s report on MMP tabled in Parliament.
8 November 2012
The unemployment rate rose half a percentage point to 7.3 per cent in the September quarter, the highest level since June 1999, according to Statistics New Zealand’s household labour force survey.
11 December 2012
High Court rules against the Maori Council’s bid to delay the partial privatisation of Mighty River Power.
19 December 2012
Education Secretary Lesley Longstone resigns.
Govt tax revenue drops
A weaker economic outlook over the next four years has taken a bite of nearly $8 billion out of the Government’s forecast tax revenues for that period.
20 December 2012
Gross domestic product grew 0.2 per cent to $36.28 billion in the three months ended September 30, from a 0.3 per cent pace in the June quarter.
Pay increase for MPs
Remuneration Authority give MPs a 1.9 per cent pay increase, backdated to 1 July.
= 2013 =
7 February 2013
Stats NZ reports 23,000 jobs lost in Q4
“Statistics New Zealand has reported there were 23,000 jobs lost in the December quarter, but the unemployment rate fell to 6.9% from 7.3% in the September quarter because of a big fall in the participation rate.”
9 February 2013
Hollywood gets heavy over Hobbit
“Film giant Warner Brothers has told the Government it will jeopardise future film investment if it releases “sensitive information” about the deal to keep production of The Hobbit in New Zealand.”
15 April 2013
Mighty River shares open to investors
Mighty River Power shares floated.
18 April 2013
Labour, Greens make power promise
Labour-Greens announce polict for single-desk electricity purchaser; NZ Power.
18 April 2013
Marriage equality vote: As it happened
A bill to legalise same-sex marriage has passed into law after its third reading in Parliament tonight, after months of emotional debate, parliamentary submissions, and passionate protests from people on either side of the issue. New Zealand has become the 13th country in the world to enshrine marriage equality in law.
1 May 2013
New starting youth wage comes into effect
Youth rates implemented for 16-19 year olds.
13 May 2013
Opposition parties object to SkyCity deal
Government announces SkyCity Deal.
14 May 2013
Justice Minister Judith Collins confirms there will be no changes to the MMP system before the 2014 election.
30 May 2013
Banks faces a charge of filing a false electoral return after his failed 2010 bid for Auckland super city mayoralty.
4 June 2013
Ministerial Inquiry report into Novopay released
Ministers Foss, Parata, and English exonerated.
7 June 2013
Peter Dunne resigns as Minister of Revenue after leaked Kitteridge Report.
2 July 2013
Pita Sharples quits Maori Party leadership
Wikipedia: Timeline of New Zealand
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