Thursday, April 25, 2024

We must rebuild New Zealand’s economy

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Prime Minister and Botany MP Christopher Luxon. Photo supplied
  • By Christopher Luxon, Prime Minister and MP for Botany

It’s been a busy few weeks for the Government as we continue to deliver changes to get our country back on track, particularly when it comes to our economy.

The latest economic data revealed the true state of the economy our Government has inherited from Labour, and reiterates how important it is for us to keep prioritising the rebuild of our economy.

The previous Government’s high taxing, high spending approach shrunk our economy in the final quarter of 2023 and left New Zealanders in a technical recession.

This data also showed our economy slowed earlier and at a faster rate than previously thought.

I’ve always said my Government’s job will be to get our economy back on track so we can ease the cost of living and help everyone in New Zealand get ahead.

Many of our early initiatives to achieve this were delivered through our 100-day plan.

We promised 49 actions through the 100-day plan and we delivered every single one.

We did things like stopping work on wasteful projects and cutting excessive spending, freezing fuel tax increases this term, refocusing the Reserve Bank on reducing inflation, getting rid of the Ute Tax, reintroducing 90-day trials for all businesses, and many more to drive our economy in the right direction.

People can also look forward to keeping more of their own money when we introduce our first Budget at the end of May, which will include tax relief for hardworking New Zealanders.

Alongside providing tax relief, we’re going to focus on developing infrastructure, improving educational outcomes, enhancing our trade partnerships, cutting the red tape holding our businesses back and driving innovation.

The Government understands that it’s only through a strong economy that we can improve our standard of living, job and business opportunities and the health and educational outcomes people deserve, and we’re working hard to deliver exactly that.

Our ministers have been working hard on a range of issues we campaigned on and we’ve announced progress in several areas recently.

Housing Minister Chris Bishop and I recently announced changes to ensure state house tenants who repeatedly threaten or disrupt their neighbours, or damage their property, will be held to account.

It’s not fair that some tenants can disrespect their neighbours and homes without consequence so we’re doing something about it.

We have instructed Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities to take stronger measures against persistent antisocial behaviour from state house tenants.

There are hundreds of serious complaints about intimidation, harassment, threatening behaviour and worse every month.

Yet, in all of 2023 only three tenancies ended due to ‘disruptive behaviour’. Enough is enough.

In education, I’m looking forward to seeing all schools put in place the ban on cell phones in classrooms from the start of Term 2.

Many schools have already made this change and I’m seeing positive feedback across the country.

Kids are at school to learn, and it’s my hope that this change will help our young people focus on the skills they need to succeed as adults.

Over the next couple of weeks, I look forward to sharing more with you all about our Government’s next steps in easing the cost of living, restoring law and order and delivering better health and education.

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