Current account crisis emphasises need for industry development

  • Jim Anderton
Deputy Prime Minister

The blow-out in the current account recorded today shows the total failure of the National party’s economic management, Alliance leader and deputy Prime Minister Jim Anderton said today.

He says the size of the deficit – over 10% of GDP in the September quarter – makes it crucial for the new government to succeed in his economic development portfolio.

“The National Party’s hands-off stance has led to a chronic failure to earn as much overseas as we are spending, which has built up a massive overseas debt.

“We urgently need an industry development policy to build job-rich new industries, especially in struggling regions.”

Jim Anderton said the current account would improve if interest and exchange rates better supported the productive sector.

“The investment income deficit needs to be addressed and, as was signalled in the Speech from the Throne today, New Zealand needs to see greater reciprocity from some of our trading partners on tariff reductions, with a more considered and balanced approach to tariff reduction.”

Further comment
Jim Anderton 025 433 722 John Pagani 025 570 872 (04) 471 9172