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Where’s my share?

Written By: - Date published: 11:00 am, February 14th, 2018 - 35 comments
Categories: business, class war, Economy, employment, poverty, Unions, wages, workers' rights - Tags:

Had anyone with a job (other than the top 2 tiers of management) had a wage increase higher than inflation recently?

Why is it that wages don’t increase when our headline unemployment rate is so low at 4.6% and falling?

Too often on the left we are used to seeing wage competitiveness falling over time due to the weakening collective bargaining power of unions.

What really matters in wage weakness is concentration of power. Simple as that.

New Zealand is a nation rife with duopolies and oligopolies. They control our economy far more than the government does. Let me list them:

– Fonterra Dairy products
– Fletcher Building, Carter Holt Building supplies
– BP, Shell, Mobil and Z Energy Petroleum
– Progressive Enterprises, Foodstuffs Groceries
– Air New Zealand and Virgin Airlines Local air routes
– Lantern Insurance
– Vector, Genesis, Contact, Meridian, Trustpower Electricity
– Talleys, Moana Pacific, Sealord Seafood
– Auckland Airport International air travel
– Ports of Auckland and Port of Tauranga sea ports
– Talleys and Watties Vegetables
– Westpac, Commonwealth, ANZ Banking
– Constellation, Heineken, Kirin, Pernod R Alcoholic drinks
– Silver Fern, ANZCO, AFFCO, Alliance Meat

OK maybe I’m a little harsh on wine producers there. But I’ve just described most of our private sector economy. Downstream they control even more of it. Some are regulated, somewhat. But that regulation makes no difference to the wages that we get: primarily they regulate price to consumers.

Those industries above exposed to the public sector operate very, very closely with a tiny and concentrated public sector – a public sector who are overall weak regulators and overall naïve clients.

And you could put a cape on E Tu, give it a running start, a pole, and a favourable wind, it wouldn’t leap the tall buildings of concentrated capital enough to gain big wage lifts.

So the core reason that wages are not lifting is: there is no competitive pressure for those companies to do so. They have a market position and no one challenges it, so you get paid what you get paid, or you can leave and there is no one else to go to. And that won’t be solved either with altering legislation to make collective bargaining slightly easier, or by toning down the pay of public sector chief executives.

Wages will lift when there is real competition for workers.

Funny thing about genuine intense competitive pressure: it tends to squeeze profits. Now look across our sharemarket: filled with low-risk near-monopolies or oligopolies who roll out reliable dividends every year. Profits are rolling in nicely cheers.Sure, they bitch and moan and complain about having to deal with a new government. But this government is not lifting a finger against them. Profits are fine (granted Fletchers are fucking up).

So rather than responding to intense competitive pressure, it looks more like our key employers are resisting real wage rises to further lift profits, pay bigger dividends, and earn their senior executives bigger bonuses. They are squeezing down pay rises because they can.

So here we get to the limit of what this government currently is: it is great at redistributing tax. It is great at effectively subsidising the wage increases that companies should be delivering, through Working For Families and other fat handouts.

It has no plan for the economy. Write some tiny R&D credits here, throw meaningless grants out the window to the regions there, hand out fried bacon, build a fake horse racing track. Sweet F.A.

This government needs to be held to account to smack the heads of the highly concentrated capital and their entrenched positions. Unless they do, our wages are going to stay exactly where they are.

At 4.6% headline unemployment, and a sustained boom in most sectors, there will be no better economic conditions for them to do so. We deserve a pay rise.

When times are this good, and a Labour government is in power, we must get our share.

35 comments on “Where’s my share?”

  1. JohnSelway 1

    Yes but only just slightly above inflation.

  2. Andre 2

    Transpower deserves a mention too. Sure it’s an SOE, but it too is a monopoly in its sector (to its customers and to its specialist employees), bloated executive pay and so on. Transmission and distribution charges are also the largest component of most electricity bills.

    https://www.meridianenergy.co.nz/your-home/pricing-and-rates/more-about-electricity-pricing

    I can live with the idea of an electricity SOE paying an excessive dividend to the government by viewing it as a tax on energy wastrels. But it still contributes to New Zealand’s high cost of living, high cost of doing business, and low productivity.

    • Ad 2.1

      Agree.

      After Solid Energy’s forays into lignite and Pike River, and MRP’s unusual investment decisions into exploration, it’s really hard to see much risk coming out of the SOE generators.

  3. Ad 3

    A curiously oblique set of measures from Robertson today.
    Most of it is through a risk framework, rather than a reward framework.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1802/S00108/robertson-the-future-of-work.htm

    It’s about time Robertson started joining some of his actual pieces up into a real framework, instead of a set of anodyne straplines about wellbeing.

    It’s like we’ve got a full-on Fabian government trying to understand a full-on oligopolistic country.

    Why the fuck does this government not call out Fletcher Building when it is over 6% of the entire sharemarket?

  4. Keepcalmcarryon 4

    And the “right” to import cheap low skilled labour to keep wages down

  5. james 5

    I would be interested how many on here own businesses and have paid staff a wage increase higher than inflation recently?

    • Puckish Rogue 5.1

      I’ve long thought that a large number on the left seem to think that private business is quite similar to the government in that private business is there to provide jobs for workers or housing for everyone

      So if a business goes under well it doesn’t matter because a new business will just spring up to take its place and everything will go on as usual

      • I’ve long thought that a large number on the left seem to think that private business is quite similar to the government in that private business is there to provide jobs for workers or housing for everyone

        The Left, unlike the RWNJs, isn’t a hive-mind.

        IMO, private business is there to screw over as many people as possible as it’s the only way to get rich.

        So if a business goes under well it doesn’t matter because a new business will just spring up to take its place and everything will go on as usual

        That’s pretty much the entire idea behind the free-market hypothesis.

    • Irrelevant. If there’s a genuine shortage of workers, pay goes up – you know, that supply and demand thing that business people supposedly know something about. Pay not increasing? No genuine shortage. It’s fairly basic stuff.

      The interesting bit is in the “why” part. Why is there no genuine shortage, when employers are wailing that they can’t get workers? Surely the two are incompatible?

      • Keepcalmcarryon 5.2.1

        The answer is importing from someone else’s cheap labor market and exploit them, suppress NZ wages win win, it’s a working a treat

  6. Ad 6

    Won’t get that from me.

    It’s work.

  7. cleangreen 7

    Is this the $11.7 billion dollar hole Joyce was talking about?????

    Giving back our share of the NZ commonwealth to the wage earners????????

    Joyce was to much of a tightwad to give anything back to his most hated sectors of the economy;

    Those were;

    Our people
    Our kiwi-rail.

    They both got nothing but cuts and hurt from Steven Joyce.

  8. Leonhart Hunt 8

    Missing fairfax media, huge media monopoly.

  9. When times are this good, and a Labour government is in power, we must get our share.

    Labour is a capitalist party and will support the capitalists continuing to screw us over.

    • Enough is Enough 9.1

      Labour’s actions in their first 100 days certainly supports your conclusion.

      How on earth they are signing the TPP (or whatever name the corporates have given it now) is beyond my comprehension.

  10. Sanctuary 10

    I hate to admit it, but I got a good pay rise.

  11. Bill 11

    This government needs to be held to account to smack the heads of the highly concentrated capital and their entrenched positions. Unless they do, our wages are going to stay exactly where they are.

    NZ Labour aren’t going to much of anything.

    They’ve left economic settings in place because, although Ardern conceded that “the experiment” had failed, economic settings have apparently got nothing to do with determining where power will tend to concentrate.

    Neo-liberalism is (paraphrasing Ardern) “What happens to people.”

    Meanwhile, NZ has a Green Party leader who, when challenged, stated that it was the intention to slate any carbon price home to consumers on a “user pays” basis.

    Way I’m reading it boils down to some (unprepared for) government ministers, with bugger all political imagination or courage, all making soothing sounds with their mouths

    • Keepcalmcarryon 11.1

      Jacinda runs the risk of being an Obama, full of soothing words but short on delivery. That way lies a backlash, ask the Americans.
      Its still early days though and there is time for meaningful change in NZ

    • Meanwhile, NZ has a Green Party leader who, when challenged, stated that it was the intention to slate any carbon price home to consumers on a “user pays” basis.

      While we have a market system to limit use of scarce resources and to limit damage to the environment and society then that is what needs to be done.

      The pricing mechanism is there to actually there to stop excessive use and the only way that can happen is by charging the users.

      And you keep saying that we need to take climate change seriously and then whinging when a political party actually does.

      • Bill 11.2.1

        For the sake of argument, I’m going to put aside the fact that price signals won’t work and assume that they do/will.

        New Zealand governments signed up to accord after accord that committed the NZ Government to take action on global warming incorporating notions of equity. User pays is highly inequitable.

        What’s more, the poor people hit hardest by user pays have contributed the least to global warming, and grounds exist for their carbon footprint going up in the short term (retro-fitting their homes and houses for example) while that of richer people comes down that much quicker to compensate.

        • Draco T Bastard 11.2.1.1

          User pays is highly inequitable.

          We can probably refine that by saying that user pays is massively inequitable when a few own everything and don’t have to work to get by.

          What’s more, the poor people hit hardest by user pays have contributed the least to global warming

          That true. Only the rich can afford to waste so much.

          But that it self raises another question: Is our income far too high?

          As I’ve pointed out before: Nobody should be able to afford to drive a car.

          That would, of course, require everyone to have a similar level of income.

          A market system can only work when everyone has the same level of wealth.

  12. weka 12

    So here we get to the limit of what this government currently is: it is great at redistributing tax. It is great at effectively subsidising the wage increases that companies should be delivering, through Working For Families and other fat handouts.

    Labour aren’t good at this. They do it enough to stop extra people living in poverty. They don’t redistribute tax to help out the people that are really struggling. And we’ve yet to see if they’re going to do much about the knee hobbling policies that stop people accessing the things that are available.

    • greywarshark 12.1

      Why don’t they start taking small steps, small easing here and there to get the idea of how things can be done. Aim for something every 2 months – 6 changes a year.

      It might be printing out all the options open to people to get from social welfare and sending everyone a copy. Jenny Shipley sent everyone a copy of a pamphlet about taking responsibility for yourself so you didn’t need welfare, about replying to a questionnaire about understanding what a citizen could expect and what they should be doing, I think not having children when not married was one of the things.

      So do something in reverse Labour coalition.

      • weka 12.1.1

        I think the problems is the underlying values. Labour appear to believe that welfare is a necessary evil, and that some people need motivating to get off a benefit even into shitty job. This affects what they are willing to do. They’re more carrot than stick relative to National, but they still consider the stick a core tool even if it’s a softer stick.

        Instead, if one looks at humans as inherently valuable and able to contribute to society, create the conditions for those people to thrive on their own terms. And if you can’t do that, in an era of permanent unemployment, let the people who don’t want to work or can’t, be on a benefit with enough to live on.

        • greywarshark 12.1.1.1

          Good one weka at 6.10pm
          +100

          Further; this is a long-form thought piece for many people, speculative and a hypothesis, not a simple jibe at some actor on the political or business stage, or some proposed infrastructure, so see if you can read it to the end as a mind exercise! (It is dangerous to an active enquiring mind to avoid all thought that is annoyingly long and not immediately relevant by putting tl;dr.)

          Let people be on a benefit – particularly after the government itself has altered
          the terms of trade so much that N Z businesses that ran profitably and employed NZs have been put out of business by companies from overseas invited to sell us their stuff by government and the importing sector. There is no likelihood of getting a thriving working society as in the 1960-70’s again that did have with economic problems that required firm handling and understanding by wider society. They could have been fixed with a lot of wrangling perhaps over a decade, but the opportunity to do this has been lost. We now have economic problems still and no thriving, working society.

          We are obsessed with the wonders of the economic age and are teaching children to embrace it and to do everything with their brain and their friend that will be everything to them, the tech answer. They are not being encouraged to write, not think anything through simply pencil to paper abut only through a machine and a huge thinking and adminstrating system, go on line for the answer to life and everything. This tends to make the modern citizen more conducive to giving up their personal will, their knowledge and physical skills, and depend on technology, and leads the way to being controlled by tech, artificial intelligence and robotisation. Soon those of us with pre-tech experience, before the 1980s, will die out and the way we are going we’ll end up similar to the people in Brave New World by Aldous Huxley.

          Also NZs have been put out of jobs by the government encouraging outsourcing of jobs to the overseas poor. Against those and other limitations on employment opportunities, also the deliberate limiting of wages by going hard on unions, and putting low inflation ahead of other economic levers, the ability to to self-manage of the people reduced and turned large numbers into welfare recipients, at all levels from desperate for housing or because of lack of money for food, to become food bank beggars.

          Yet the government then turns round and punishes those citizens suffering the results of what the Labour government and their Gang of Four or more. deliberately brought about and National have gleefully advanced and expanded. Both major Parties have worked in conjunction with Treasury, which seems made up of narrow-minded, po-faced snobs good at mathematics with capitalism and wealth carved into their hearts and embedded in their souls with an affect like an infected, poisoned dart.

          We have already given up devising some NZ focussed policies and imported them from the most powerful English-speaking land, the USA, such as in education. We have imported their economic policies, through the OECD, the Chicago school bringing us neo-lib economic framework, Harvard training the thinking of decision makers, for instance.

          And we do have a dangerous system of exploiting to the point of extinction or decline to uneconomic levels, every possible avenue to wealth available in this country, with no responsibility taken for bad affects, and a diminishing standard of human living conditions, with a stamping-out-bushfires mentality from most of those managing each administrative entity.

  13. Kevin 13

    Interesting read on The Intercept
    https://theintercept.com/2018/02/09/tax-bill-democrats/

    “IN DECEMBER, REPUBLICANS achieved their long-held dream of lowering taxes for the wealthy and corporations and increasing taxes for pretty much everyone else.

    Democrats were universal in their hostility toward the project, but as the Trump administration has pulled off a PR coup — with companies announcing “Trump bonuses” and workers seeing bumps to their take-home pay — the party has not yet formulated its response nor have they suggested what they’ll do when and if they return to power.”

    So, in the home of unbridled capitalism, businesses were passing on some tax relief to their staff. Here in NZ, what are the chances of that happening?
    Fuck all, in my opinion.

  14. ropata 14

    Wage Growth vs. Profit Growith, 2017 chart (from Aussie) 🙁

    #qanda pic.twitter.com/dqZUjaWQr4— Just human (@Backoff11111) February 12, 2018

    • It’s been that way across the OECD for the last thirty years. Profits have sky-rocketed while wages have stagnated. At the lower end, wages have gone down in real terms.

  15. Ken 15

    Nothing for years.

  16. gsays 16

    Thanks ad for this post.
    As I am in hospitality as a chef, I find it hard to understand the poor wages when, apparently, there is a shortage of skilled workers.
    I am not sure if my beloved trade (used to be a profession) conditions are being diminished because of greedy employers or sub standard workers.

  17. WC1 17

    Percentage wage increases are one of the reasons for the widening gap between the top and the bottom earners. 2% for someone on the minium wage is not a lot, but for a manager on $200,000 its pretty damn good. As a British trade union leader put it “5% of nowt is nowt”.

  18. patricia bremner 18

    Which is why this government wants to bring in benchmarks for alike work.

    I’m going to use the WORD. To make it FAIR.

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    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    6 days ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
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    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    6 days ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
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    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    6 days ago
  • Outsiders.
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    6 days ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
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    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 days ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    7 days ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
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    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
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    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    1 week ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
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    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • A Government System That Works
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    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
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    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
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    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
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    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    1 week ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
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    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    1 week ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    1 week ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    1 week ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago

  • Planning for the future of tourism
    Tourism New Zealand to lead work reimagining the way tourism operates in post-COVID-19 world. Ministers to review International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy investment plan. The Government, industry and business are working together to develop a plan for how tourism will operate in a post-COVID-19 world, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 hour ago
  • NZ horticulture sector feeding Kiwis and the world during COVID-19
    More New Zealanders are taking up the chance to work in horticulture as the sector keeps New Zealanders fed and in jobs during the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 lockdown. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Work to repurpose PGF funds begins
    The Provincial Development Unit is working through applications and projects to see where Provincial Growth Fund money can be repurposed for initiatives deemed more critical to fighting the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “We need to be throwing everything we have at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • A million workers supported by Govt wage subsidy
    The Government’s wage subsidy to protect jobs and keep workers and businesses connected during the lockdown has now supported over a million New Zealanders, with $6.6 billion already paid out. “We’re supporting businesses to pay wages, and stay connected with their workers so that we are all in a better ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago