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Covid crisis needs tough policy response

At our Initiative staff meetings over the past two months, Covid-19 already dominated our discussions. Startling as they are, we are not surprised by the events of the past days. If the Government moves quickly and confidently to beef up its border controls, testing regime and quarantine measures then, given our limited number of cases now, there is still a slim chance to avoid a national health disaster. We must stamp out the virus at all cost in New Zealand. Read more

Dr Oliver Hartwich
Insights Newsletter
17 March, 2020
World4

How the OECD thinks about Covid-19

Many international institutions will be considering the economic consequences of Covid-19 and what to do about it.For three years, I worked in the Economics Department of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and contributed to the production of its Economic Outlook – a publication looking at the growth prospects and policy challenges of member countries.So, I know the OECD has some important advantages and can draw on the experiences of how its 36 members dealt with potentially similar... Read more

Insights Newsletter
17 March, 2020
Singapore

Singapore's successful containment of Covid-19

Plenty of first-world countries have been hit with Coronavirus cases and failed to stamp it out effectively. However, Singapore has once again shined as an example of clever public policy.As of March 17, Singapore has a very low total number of cases with (243) because its government took what World Health Organisation Director-General Tedros Adhanom described as an “all-of-government approach." How did it achieve this? In the initial phase, Singapore focused mainly on border controls to prevent the virus entering. Read more

Insights Newsletter
17 March, 2020
Test

The fog of war

In wartime, it’s often hard to know exactly what is going on. Good communication is critical but it’s hard for governments – or anyone else – to make good decisions in the absence of information. I have watched this Covid-19 pandemic for some time. One of the first things I did after my summer holiday in mid-January was to attempt to purchase N95 masks – but they were already sold out. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
17 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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