19 October 2020

Businesses need predictability and acceleration  

In the midst of COVID and the unpredictability that continues to bring, the election outcome will bring some certainty and a level of continuity for the business community, says Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Leeann Watson.  
“The last year has been a very challenging year, with the uncertainty of COVID compressed by the lead-up – and subsequent postponement – of the general election. Businesses need predictability and stability for forward planning, particularly for sectors such as agriculture, energy, manufacturing, and infrastructure.”  
Ms Watson says it will be important that Government articulates its economic plan in the next few weeks and focuses on a transformative agenda to maintain business confidence and accelerate the country’s economic recovery. 
“With a strong mandate to govern alone, this also brings expectations of delivery and trust, so it is imperative that the Labour Party adopts a new approach to accelerating our recovery.  
“Businesses are looking for a more targeted and focused approach with a clear economic recovery plan for delivery. In particular we would like to see a 100-day plan to set the groundwork on what we hope will be an election term of streamlined action, setting the country up as a leader in the global economic recovery.” 
Ms Watson says cutting regulation, creating new jobs, building skills, planned border re-opening and investment in infrastructure all need to be a key focus for the new Government. 
“As businesses shift their focus to repositioning for the future, it is critical that we have an economic and  regulatory framework that is an enabler for business, and promotes innovation, productivity and economic growth as critical success factors, alongside positive health and social and community outcomes. 
“We would like to see a focus on cutting regulation, particularly for small business; innovative thinking and an immediate focus on reskilling and immigration settings that provide skilled workers that are needed; a risk management approach to border re-opening in a safe way; clarity on the infrastructure pipeline, private partnerships and government procurements, and the Resource Management Act; and a goal to stay ambitious for sustainability. 
“We have a proud history of working closely with central Government on key issues such as these that will impact the local business community. As a trusted and reasonable network, The Chamber alongside the BusinessNZ Network has worked constructively with the Government over the years and we look forward to continuing this tradition.” 

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For more information, or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Leeann Watson, Chief Executive, 027 447 7775, [email protected]

The Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce (The Chamber) is a not-for-profit membership-based service organisation that has been the home and voice of business in the Canterbury region since 1859. Comprised of over 2,600 member organisations that represent over 60,000 employees, The Chamber’s purpose is to empower people in business by providing advisory and consultancy support in employment relations, human resources, health and safety, international trade, manufacturing, migrant support, research and development grants, and training and development in many areas.

Affiliated to BusinessNZ and the New Zealand Chambers of Commerce and Industry