15 November, 2012
Focus on growth in second Pure Advantage report
The latest Pure Advantage report, Green Growth Opportunities for New Zealand, underscores the importance of a significant number of existing government initiatives already underway, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce says.
“The new report makes a useful contribution to the debate on how we can make the best use of New Zealand’s natural resources and competitive advantages,” Mr Joyce says.
“The report gives greater focus on profitable growth while improving our environmental outcomes. In particular the recommendations to further develop fisheries, aquaculture, and the timber industry mesh well with initiatives the Government already has underway in these industries.
“The Government firmly believes that we must take advantage of all of our opportunities to grow our economy and Pure Advantage’s proposals are a positive addition to the investment landscape. However, it is important that we don’t pick ‘winning’ industries and exclude others.
“It is the willingness of industry and individuals to invest that is the true test of a viable industry, and the Government is focussed on reducing barriers and delays to those investment opportunities.
“We welcome the report’s focus on energy efficiency, water reform and investment in research and development. These are all key elements in the Government’s Business Growth Agenda.
“Our Building Innovation progress report details plans to grow R&D spend, particularly by private companies. Improving the productivity of our agricultural sector while improving water quality in lakes and rivers is a key part of the upcoming Building Resources progress report.
“Energy efficiency is also crucially important which is why the Government has committed $347 million to our Warm Up NZ home insulation scheme, and is supporting the development of electric car technologies and commercially viable second-generation biofuels.
“The Government has also invested heavily in research projects in most of the areas identified for investment in the report and our Science Challenges will identify further opportunities.
“In regards to New Zealand’s branding, the Government is midway through a project to develop a broader New Zealand story for use across all the different ways in which we interact with the world that incorporates our innovation, our personalities, our unique Maori culture, and our clean green image. This is due for completion in the first half of next year.”