While Finance Minister makes glib comments that the New Zealand economy is so healthy it is preparing for a triathlon, the real economy is dangerously unbalanced and Kiwi families are paying the price, Green Co-leader Dr Russel Norman said today.
Minister English today confirmed to the Finance and Expenditure Select Committee that he has no plans and no ideas to bring down the dollar to a fair level to save jobs in our exporting and manufacturing sectors, and bring down the burgeoning current account deficit to a sustainable level.
When asked why he wouldn't adopt the modern policies being successfully used in other countries, Minister English said 'the UK economy is in the emergency room, New Zealand is out training for a triathlon'.
"While the National Government sits on its hands, Kiwi families are taking part in their own triathlon - synchronised redundancies, family budget hurdles, and the cross-Tasman dash," said Dr Norman.
"While National continues to do nothing, Kiwi families continue to experience the pain of job losses, face tighter family budgets, and pack their bags for Australia in record numbers.
"This Government promised a re-balanced economy with an export-led recovery and 170,000 more jobs.
"Instead, it has delivered the largest current account deficit in the developed world, another housing bubble, plunging exports of manufactured goods, and 30,000 job losses in the past year.
"Minister English's recipe is to keep on with the same failed policies and promising different results. It's madness, which economists are warning will end in catastrophe as our national debt hits critical levels.
"There are sensible, proven alternatives that other countries have used to protect their exporters and save jobs. They all have costs, but the cost of doing nothing is far greater.
"New Zealanders deserve better; they deserve a government that will use smart, green economic ideas to bring down the dollar and get New Zealand working again," said Dr Norman.