As usual an insightful analysis from Rod Oram on the need for our political and business sector leaders to better come to grips with what the international economic situation means domestically. He says:
Every sector of this economy has its own set of structural challenges forced on it by global conditions. Yet, we’re hearing nothing from the likes of Federated Farmers and the Tourism Industry Association that suggests they are even aware of their issues, let alon[e] planning a response.
The same is true for the new government, judging by last week’s throne speech. Yes, the speech had a few perfunctory paragraphs about the global crisis, but it offered no insight into how New Zealand might respond or the role government might play. “The driving goal of the new government will be to grow the New Zealand economy in order to deliver greater prosperity, security and opportunities to all New Zealanders.”
Yes, but what is New Zealand’s role in the world economy? How is it changing? How shall we respond to those threats and opportunities? All the speech offered was a bit of fiscal stimulus via tax cuts planned long before the crisis hit and some totally vague promises about the likes of transitional help for people made redundant, more infrastructure spending, better education standards and attempts to improve the bureaucracy.
It was a speech for a time and conditions that no longer exist. When reality does sink in, we’ll plummet. Let’s hope the pohutukawa we grab on the way down has roots strong and deep enough to hold us.
With the details of National’s transition package for workers who lose their jobs due today it would be great to see alongside it some more details of where NZ should be heading to ride out the stormy days ahead.