National’s economic development action plan released today answers some questions about the framework behind current initiatives and new policies, says BusinessNZ.
Chief Executive Phil O’Reilly says concerns expressed in the recent Deloitte-BusinessNZ election survey ‘that there’s no overall plan’ will be at least partly assuaged by today’s announcement.
“National’s move to respond to those concerns is appreciated. Knowing there is a roadmap for economic growth is important for businesses considering future investment. For business to invest we need to know what the broad directions are for things like infrastructure, regulations, innovation and skills - and it is hard to follow an overall plan that is communicated by ad hoc announcements.
“Today’s announcement does not give a great deal of detail, but it is a good start.
“The overall aim of achieving a more competitive economy will be welcomed by business.
“The focus on science and innovation as a key way of achieving competitiveness is sound. Existing work investing in ITC and science and new policies such as the support for high tech manufacturing and services are squarely aimed at competitiveness improvements.
“Such policies rely on skills and education and it would have been good to see where these fit with the economic development plan.
“Another determinant of competitiveness is government spending. Business would like to see government spending significantly reduced, so the tax and regulatory burdens can also be reduced.
“Of course the success of any plan lies in its execution. Communicating priorities, incorporating change where necessary and refraining from picking winners will be some of the hallmarks of a successful plan.
“National is to be congratulated for responding to valid concerns and publishing its development plan. Other parties would do well to publish their own,” Mr O’Reilly said.