New Zealand has lost 20,000 manufacturing jobs under National, a serious blow for business and workers, says Labour Leader David Shearer.
"National has lost 20,000 manufacturing jobs on its watch. They are letting manufacturing rust in the regions. Exporters are crying out for help on the dollar and being forced to cut thousands of jobs but National stands idly by.
"Labour knows we need to make innovative, quality products to sell to the world. Modern manufacturing creates high-wage jobs that keep the economy growing, businesses booming and wages rising.
"But to get moving and creating good jobs we need a competitive currency. Our exporters are struggling under the high dollar but the government is refusing to help.
"Labour will make our currency competitive. By increasing savings, reforming tax to get investment into exporting businesses and making the Reserve Bank take growth into account we will get the dollar down to normal, the economy moving and wages rising.
"National's stumbling economic vision is of Kiwis doing grunt jobs for low wages, a hollowed-out heartland and old-fashioned agriculture. That's not a recipe for real growth.
"The only growth ideas National has are dubious deals for convention centres, attempts to make us an international pariah as a tax haven and keeping our wages low so we do grunt jobs for the Aussies. Labour will create a modern economy, National wants a service economy."
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