The EMA today welcomed the announcement of the new coalition government and says it looks forward to working with closely with incoming Prime Minister Christopher Luxon, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Minister of Regulation David Seymour.
EMA Chief Executive Brett O’Riley says that now the governing relations have been finalised, it is important that the coalition gets down to work and delivers the change New Zealanders voted for.
“The message from our members is clear. We need the incoming government to deliver the policies that make doing business easier so we can help drive New Zealand’s economic recovery,” says O’Riley.
“What business needs most is certainty. That means a clear economic plan that rebuilds confidence in the economy and supports increased investment, innovation and entrepreneurship. A successful economy also funds the improvements we need in our education and health systems.
“We need to see a rolling back the red tape that is holding business back and the introduction of the right tax incentives to encourage investment, from both domestic and foreign investment. That is why we welcome the appointment David Seymour as the new Minister of Regulation.
“We also need to improve the flexibility of our labour market and we look forward to working with incoming Minster of Workplace Relations and Safety Brooke van Velden to achieve this. We will be encouraging the new Minister to urgently scrap the Fair Pay Agreement legislation, which risks taking our employment relations framework back to the 1970s, as well as reintroducing 90-day trials for all firms to support more people into work.
“We also need to develop a plan to address areas of ongoing skills shortages. This include relooking at our immigration settings, supporting New Zealanders to reskill into those areas where there is demand, and pivoting our education system to better prepare our young people for the jobs of tomorrow. For this reason, we are strongly supportive of Erica Stanford being made both Minister of Education and Minister of Immigration, which will allow greater coordination between these two important portfolios.
“We also welcome the reintroduction of the $1.2 billion regional infrastructure fund to support capital investment in our regions, especially Northland, Coromandel and the Eastern Bay of the Plenty. New Zealand urgently needs better infrastructure, and we are hopeful that the infrastructure fund can support some badly needed projects in our regions.
“We also need to make it easier to build things in New Zealand by relooking at our resource management legislation. We can’t continue to have important infrastructure and housing projects held up for years by an overly bureaucratic approval process. We will be new government to move quickly but carefully in this area.”
O’Riley says that the EMA and its members look forward to supporting the new coalition in any way that it can as it looks to implement its policy programme.
“The opportunity for New Zealand is enormous. While the current economic conditions are challenging, we know that with the right settings, business can drive our economic recovery and deliver the high-paying jobs, taxes and productivity gains to lift our living standards,” says O’Riley.
“The EMA is ready to roll up its sleeves and get to work alongside the new coalition to help deliver the change that New Zealanders voted for.”