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Things that will live

Written By: - Date published: 10:58 am, June 19th, 2020 - 14 comments
Categories: Economy, Globalisation, jobs, labour, treasury, uncategorized - Tags:

Despite downbeat economic predictions and an imminent global recession, the New Zealand recovery offers opportunities for entrepreneurial success that exceed anything we’ve seen for decades.

According to the collected data released by the New Zealand Treasury, many of our key markets are currently faring better through this Covid-19 epic disaster than predicted in March.

Retail card spending us up on the same time last year, according to Paymark, but when groceries are excluded, it’s a little down.

The weekly growth in Jobseeker Support was surging but has trended down fast, according to the Ministry of Social Welfare.

Earlier this week the Ministry for Primary Industries released the Economic Update for the Primary industries, which shows year-to-date primary industries export revenue is tracking 4.5% ($1.7 billion) higher than the previous year.

Dairy exports were particularly strong since the start of March, up $512 million or 12% annually.

China just loves our meat exports, with African Swine Fever making us look awesome, and of course they’re turning away Australian beef.

Our apples and kiwifruit have already shot up 18% on last year.

And we know that this years’ wine vintage is going to be one of the very best on record. Babich is doing a Patriarch, Alpha Domus is doing a Pope, so the Penfold Bin 48s and beyond can get stuffed.

The main ministers noted that this agricultural sector is fuelled by government cash as well:

We are committed to supporting our vital primary sector continue to fetch value and create jobs – including $19.3 million to place 10,000 people into primary sector jobs, $127 million for jobs to help control wilding pines and get populations of wallabies under control and the government’s $110 million worker redeployment package, to create employment for people who have lost their jobs.”

If you turn to pretty much every sector of our economy, all of them as industries have recovery plans that the government is organising with them, or throwing bailout funds at, or both.

There was no grand plan. They Just Did This.

Hard on the heels of the jaw-dropping scale of the wage subsidies, this week the government has released a massive accelerant to the construction, local government, and infrastructure industries with 11 projects that need acceleration and are going to get it with special legislation which will be introduced into the House this week, and has a 2 year sunset. The jobs are:

  • Kaikohe water storage facility – to provide water for agricultural and horticultural use and drinking water in Kaikohe. 70 jobs.
  • Unitec – Phase 1 – high density housing on the Unitec site in Auckland. 250 jobs.
  • Te Pa Tahuna – Phase 1 – up to 180 residential units and retail space on an old school site in Queenstown – part of a wider development that aims to provide up to 300 high density dwellings. Up to 100 jobs.
  • Papakāinga Network Development – the delivery of Papakainga across six sites; in Kaitaia, Pt Chevalier, Raglan, Waitara, Chatham Islands and Christchurch. Up to 120 dwellings. It is being delivered by Māori developers with support from Te Puni Kōkiri. Will help retain and expand the existing workforce.
  • Britomart East Upgrade – upgrades to Britomart station to ensure the City Rail Link project can operate at full capacity once services commence. 30 jobs.
  • Papakura to Pukekohe electrification – electrification of rail from Papakura to Pukekohe and the construction of three rail platforms. 85 jobs.
  • Wellington Metro Upgrade programme – suite of smaller projects aimed at increasing the passenger and freight capacity of trains between Masterton, Levin and Wellington. 90 jobs.
  • Picton Ferry Dock and Terminal upgrade – The project will improve rail services by expanding the docks and upgrading the passenger terminal. 200 jobs.
  • Northern Pathway – a cycleway and walkway between Westhaven and Akoranga in Auckland. 50 jobs.
  • Papakura to Drury SH1 roading upgrade – upgrades to SH1 to improve its capacity, as well as constructing new walking and cycling facilities to improve highway access and safety.. Up to 350 jobs.
  • Te Ara Tūpuna – a cycleway and walkway between Petone and Ngauranga in Wellington.

That’s a lot of locals with mortgages paid and food on the tables.

For the big-thinking version of rebuilding New Zealand’s economic framework, PWC have been doing some useful work for Treasury and MBIE to consider.

For companies, partnerships, trusts, couples, and workers, we are all re-setting our lives and our expectations. We are re-thinking our selves, and making moves.

We can already see that some industries are so damaged by Covid-19 that they will never recover, or be reduced to the size of minor cottage affairs.

It’s also clear that Prime Minister Ardern has secured a global competitive economic advantage that looks set to benefit us for as long as the virus smashes around the world.

The big economic engines of our recovery are firing, and this government is guiding the re-launch very closely.

14 comments on “Things that will live ”

  1. froggleblocks 1

    1,225 jobs from a measly 11 "shovel-ready" projects doesn't seem like much when Fletcher's are making 1,000 people redundant.

  2. McFlock 2

    It'll be tough, but at least we have to deal with one thing at a time – most of the Northern hemisphere will have the depression and covid concurrently.

  3. The last 20 years were a golden age of travel and tourism that may not come again for a very long time. So it's good to see the government pivot to other things.

    The true wealth of this country is its people, and the Labour-led govt is beginning to build for the future rather than living in the past. There’s a lot of work to be done.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      and the Labour-led govt is beginning to build for the future rather than living in the past.

      I'm really not seeing that as the focus on the primary sector proves.

      • There is farming and farming. More and more are joining the dots re soil preservation and soil health. Regenerative farming needs to be made desirable, through free demonstrations, and compensation for changing direction. This happened when Kiwifruit became too popular and drove prices to uneconomic levels. Growers were helped to change direction.
        If you are refering to forestry, using NZ timber more needs support, one thing I agree with Minister Jones about.

    • Treetop 3.2

      The thinking that was used in the past is not the future. I liked your use of "a golden age of travel and tourism that may not come again for a very long time."

      Covid-19 is about to explode globally. NZ is fortunate that it has a secure border providing the border is properly managed when people enter the country. 2020 is going to be a very challenging year and adjusting requires patience and understanding.

  4. Draco T Bastard 4

    We are committed to supporting our vital primary sector continue to fetch value and create jobs – including $19.3 million to place 10,000 people into primary sector jobs

    When the hell are they going to realise that we have no more room or natural services to continue to expand the agricultural sector?

    What they're doing is uneconomic.

    • It depends on the type of farming.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1

        It depends on more than that. It is a highly complex, cyclic system.

        I figure that we can grow enough food to feed the people who live here as long as the resources represented by that food are passed back into the land.

        What we can't do is try to feed the world which is what we're actually trying to do. Trying to feed the world from our small nation will just leave our land barren and not even capable of feeding those who live here.

        • Treetop 4.1.1.1

          It sounds as though it is time people look at how they eat. Already I can see a trend in people not throwing out excess food. The rats have certainly noticed a shortage of food.

          How many different cheeses, grains, cuts of meat, sugar and fat loaded food do people need?

        • Draco, Many of those workers will work in soil health and value added areas and also will replace the thousands brought in for harvesting.

          Farm practice now requires each animal to be tested at various stages of growth, more tagging for tracing systems, and more shift work to create fairer working conditions.

          The carbon pricing mechanism will cause changes as well. To quote a past Kiwi 'It won't happen overnight, but it will happen'

    • Hunter Thompson II 4.2

      Our politicians – or most of them, at least – are well aware that things will never be the same again thanks to Covid-19. But I suspect that at the next election they will let the voters think that it is possible to return to things as they were.

      In reality, the next generation will be made to bear enormous environmental and fiscal deficits.

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