And this is a good thing, Grant?

(Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)


Grant Robertson spoke on TVNZ1’s Q+A this morning and responded to the latest business confidence survey from the Auckland Chamber of Commerce which suggests business confidence is down.

“I think the conditions, the underlying conditions of the economy, the environment we’re working in now, has got a lot of opportunity,” he said.

“I think what we’re dealing with here is an issue around perception, and, sure, we can improve the ways we communicate, and we need to always work on that.”?End of quote.

So it is only a ‘perception’ of the businesses in Taranaki that their golden goose is cooked? It is only a ‘perception’ of small businesses that minimum wage rises and longer maternity leave provisions will impact their profitability? It is only a ‘perception’ that farmers are worried about the impact of the ETS on their businesses?

Good to know, so glad it is not real.?Quote.

Robertson also told host Corin Dann, there is precedent for these kinds of business confidence reactions to Labour governments.

“This is not a new thing for governments where the Labour Party’s at the centre of them,” Robertson said.?End of quote.

Is this some sort of badge of honour that the Labour Party aspires to, or what?? Every time there is a Labour government the business confidence index drops, but that is ‘normal’ and to be expected? Why?? Doesn’t this tell you something, Grant??Quote.

“If you go back historically on business confidence data, this happens. It doesn’t necessarily match up with GDP growth, which has actually been historically very good under Labour-led governments.”?End of quote.

Really?? Shall we look at the numbers, then?

The red lines represent the years Labour was in power and the blue graph is the GDP growth rate.? Access to the actual numbers is a paid service so we cannot establish trend lines for the various administrations. Thus an ‘eyeball’ approach will have to suffice, and it seems to me that the GDP growth is pretty independent of the party in power. One does not know how long the policies that carry over from one administration to the next take to work through the system and affect the figures.?Quote.

Mr Robertson also said it was unlikely any concessions would be given to businesses to improve confidence.

“I don’t think it’s a matter of concessions, necessarily, but if we take the industrial law point, we want to work together on that,” he said.

“Short and medium term, we?ve got some fiscal stimulus coming from our Families Package, but obviously medium and long term, we transition to an economy that?s more productive.End of quote.

And we will do that by suddenly axing the petrochemical industry. Then we will attack the farmers and after that? . . .