David Thompson Posted:
So very, very true. It beggars belief that we consider ourselves to be a developed nation when so much of our economy is based on selling milk powder or logs. BTW, I own a Plinius amplifier (my second) that drives a set of Theophany speakers.
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David Thompson Posted:
A robust but sobering report. It concerns me that confidence is rising, yet sales and exports are down and "manufacturers and exporters are still lagging behind other sectors". Surely we should wait until we're earning more money before we start spending more?
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siemens Posted:
Yes true! The only thing that will never die in this world is the nature and its science behind it. Great post.
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Kieran Ormandy Posted:
Thanks for the question Steven, Germany has seen increases in manufacturing employment since 2009, and Switzerland has had stable manufacturing employment between 2006 – 2011, even in the face of ongoing Euro-zone issues. Korea has seen increases in manufacturing employment since 2008 and Israel experienced large increases since 1998, while being stable over the last 4 years. Singapore has had increases in manufacturing employment over the last two years. These countries all value their manufacturing sectors and work to protect them, this is reflected in the above numbers and their performance through the GFC. Note data around the above examples was sourced from OECD labour market stats.
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John Walley Posted:
Point one: you should have no doubt what our Association says publically represent the views of our members. Point two: we don’t knee jerk responses, if you trace back our comments around NZPower you will see them link all the way back to our research in 2004 and 2005. All that material is fully linked from our comments above. Point three: you will note our comments on major users, sadly the same advantage does not accrue to smaller industrial users. The perverse incentives of the LRMC approach in all this are well known. Point four: the NZMEA is not like any other Association in New Zealand we admit only manufacturers and exporters into membership, and our public expressions are the views of that restricted membership.
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Don Brash: Super scheme cannot continue in present form

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Don Brash discusses the Financial Services Council's report on Superannuation in a column in the NZ Herald.

He the recommends some changes to make make Superannuation more affordable:

In my view, there are two things which are key to enabling older New Zealanders to maintain a reasonable standard of living in retirement.

First, we should maintain New Zealand Super as a universal benefit at its present level relative to the average wage (for a married couple, at 66 per cent of the average wage), but recognise that the age of eligibility must go up. In 2010, the Australians announced the age of eligibility there would start increasing in 2016, and reach 67 by 2023.

If we announced a change this year, we could start increasing the age of eligibility in, say, 2018, and reach 67 by 2025. Thereafter, the age of eligibility should be indexed to life expectancy.

Secondly, it is imperative that we make housing more affordable in New Zealand. One of the reasons why most retired New Zealanders currently enjoy a reasonable standard of living is that most of them own debt-free homes. But owning a debt-free home has become well beyond the reach of most younger New Zealanders.

How do we make homes more affordable, so that the next generation of New Zealanders has a chance to arrive at retirement owning a debt-free home? The Productivity Commission was in no doubt that the most important factor in making homes more affordable would be to free up the supply of residential land - making sections vastly cheaper and enabling builders to gain economies of scale by building several houses at a time.

With fewer than five million people spread across an area greater than the United Kingdom, it is extraordinary that New Zealanders are expected to pay upwards of $200,000 for 500 square metres of dirt - equivalent to $4 million per hectare - even in quite distant suburbs.

Doing that would have a double bonus. Not only would many more New Zealanders be able to afford to buy their own homes, but we would be much more inclined to save from our current income if we could no longer rely on a continuing escalation of house prices to make us rich - surely a major factor in our poor savings performance over the last 20 years.

The result? A fiscally sustainable New Zealand Super scheme, younger New Zealanders having a good chance of owning a debt-free home by retirement, and more private sector savings to supplement retirement income.

tags: superannuation, don brash, retirement age


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