Media Release: Kiwi households could lose $10,000 of yearly income from Covid-19 lockdown, new report says

Wellington, 3 April - If New Zealand can’t recover from the economic “heart attack” of self-imposed lockdown, it could face GDP losses at Great Depression levels, according to a New Zealand Initiative research note. While the Covid-19 pandemic has not ruined New Zealand’s economic capabilities, the lockdown has forced the country into an unprecedented productivity pause which the Initiative’s senior fellow Bryce Wilkinson says could slice away about $10,000 per household this year. Read more

Media Release
3 April, 2020

Media Release: New Zealand Initiative criticises Government for rushing new vaping legislation during lockdown

Wellington, 1 April - Rushing to deal with new vaping legislation during an unprecedented economic lockdown is not just folly, it is anti-democratic, according to a public submission by the New Zealand Initiative. While most businesses and public services are shut down as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Government has retained its deadline for public submissions about its tabled Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products (Vaping) Amendments Bill, due today. Read more

Media Release
1 April, 2020

Media Release: New Zealand Initiative welcomes the Government’s plans to ramp up testing for Covid-19

Wellington, 31 March - The New Zealand Initiative welcomes the Government’s plans to ramp up testing for Covid-19 beyond 3500 per day to get the country closer to reopening its economy. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern told a press briefing this afternoon the Government has completed approximately 21,000 tests for the coronavirus Covid-19 already and is on track to issue 3500 tests per day. But Ardern said authorities weren't testing widely enough to accurately judge the location of community outbreaks and... Read more

Media Release
31 March, 2020

Media Release: Universal Basic Income (UBI) not the solution we need right now

Wellington, 27 March - The pandemic-induced recession creates a strong case for the Government to support struggling workers with targeted assistance, rather than a Universal Basic Income (UBI), according to the new policy paper Stay on Target by The New Zealand Initiative. As the Government searches for fresh and innovative ideas to prepare for the worst economic effects of shutting down the country’s commerce over four weeks, it has tentatively proposed the introduction of a universal basic income scheme. Read more

Media Release
27 March, 2020

Media Release: Public policy prescription for a pandemic

Wellington, 26 March 2020 – Mixing the New Zealand Initiative’s research with ideas from dozens of the largest Kiwi firms, the think tank has produced a comprehensive touchstone document on the best range of Covid-19 policy responses. Written by the Initiative’s chief economist Eric Crampton, with research assistance from Leonard Hong, Effective Treatment: Public policy prescription for a pandemic warns that without sound, quick and careful policy adjustments implemented by the Government, New Zealand risks slipping into a deep recession. Read more

Media Release
26 March, 2020

Media Release: New Zealand Initiative urges quarantine for non-urgent legislation

Wellington, 26 March - Asking the public for submissions on pending legislation while the country is in pandemic lockdown risks making a farce of democracy and unnecessarily distracting the Government, according to a new policy paper by the New Zealand Initiative. The business of government must go on, said the Initiative’s chief economist Dr Eric Crampton, but politicians can afford to put less urgent matters aside for the time being. Read more

Media Release
26 March, 2020

New Report: New Zealand should move to short-time work model to reduce economic impact of Covid-19

Wellington, 24 March 2020 – The New Zealand Initiative says the Government must change its approach towards wage subsidies to avoid a mass lay-off of jobs and the potential destruction of many companies. In a new paper called Short-time work to maintain employment, New Zealand could preserve an extra 3-4% of jobs – even during the harshest economic impact of the Covid-19 shutdowns – by adopting a successful European policy tested during the GFC. Read more

Media release
24 March, 2020

Media Release: Whatever it takes – NZ Initiative applauds RBNZ interest rate cut

Wellington, 16 March 2020 - The New Zealand Initiative welcomes the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s move to cut interest rates and suspend the tightening of bank capital requirements. However, the Initiative’s Chief Economist Dr Eric Crampton warns that more will be necessary. “Even as the RBNZ announced a shift to a 0.25% interest rate and the potential for quantitative easing through purchasing government bonds, the US Federal Reserve cut interest rates to zero while announcing purchases of at least... Read more

Media Release
16 March, 2020

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