Getting more out of our most productive firms

  • Hon Grant Robertson

Finance Minister Grant Robertson has approved the terms of reference for an Inquiry into the economic contribution of New Zealand's frontier firms.

Frontier firms are the most productive firms in the domestic economy within their own industry.

“These firms are important as they diffuse new technologies and business practices into the wider New Zealand economy.

“While we do have some world-leading firms, we need them to lift performance and productivity to create a pathway for more firms to succeed on the world stage,” Grant Robertson says.

Work undertaken by the Productivity Commission in 2016 suggested that New Zealand’s firms were on average, about one-third less productive than international firms in the same industry.

The Commission will lead the inquiry to identify ways to maximise the performance of these firms and lift their contribution to the economy.

“The terms of reference I have released today include identifying the factors that could be inhibiting the performance of these firms, factors that detract from the diffusing of technology and knowledge in the New Zealand economy and also investigating the economic contribution of Māori frontier firms.

“We want all our innovative and productive companies to do well and have that success flow through to other parts of the economy,” Grant Robertson says.

Final reports are due to be delivered to ministers early next year.