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Govt Has Agreed To Set Up Productivity Taskforce, Hide Says

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Rodney Hide. Pic: NZPA
Rodney Hide. Pic: NZPA

Wellington, June 23 NZPA - The Government has agreed to establish a taskforce that will work on ways to close the productivity gap between Australia and New Zealand, party leader Rodney Hide said today.

He told a meeting of party members in Wellington that catching up with Australia had been ACT's policy for the last two years and the target was to do that by 2025.

"We've got agreement to establish a 2025 taskforce which will meet and issue an annual report on what New Zealand needs to do to lift its productivity growth and measure our progress," Mr Hide said.

"Work will start within a month and the taskforce will report by the end of the year."

Mr Hide said New Zealand's labour productivity would have to grow by 3 percent a year to close the gap, which at present was more than 30 percent.

"We haven't seen 3 percent for's been about 1 percent for 10 years," he said.

"Lifting it to 3 percent is a big stretch."

Mr Hide said the chair of the taskforce was settled and he was working on its membership.

He also told the meeting ACT was confident agreement would be reached with National over the three strikes legislation it wants to put into law.

The policy means offenders would be imprisoned for life after committing three serious crimes and it has been included in a government bill which is being considered by a select committee.

ACT and National are haggling over changes and the Government wants sentences of five years or more to count as strike offences.

ACT sees that as weakening its policy and Mr Hide said a compromise was likely to be reached.

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