Chamber keen to aid in Govt business growth agenda

The Otago Chamber of Commerce is keen to be part of the Government's business growth agenda, president Peter McIntyre says.

Commenting on the Government's release of the key areas of its business growth agenda, he said the chamber was a key lobby and advocacy organisation.

For the Government's plan to be successful, the message had to be delivered to the wider business community, Mr McIntyre said.

"We can spread the message."

Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce announced on Tuesday the Government would focus on six areas over the next three years to help companies grow and build a more productive and competitive economy.

The six areas are: capital markets; innovation and ideas; developing skilled and safe workplaces; natural resources; infrastructure, including electricity, broadband and transport; and export markets.

Mr McIntyre said education was missing from the list.

"To have a list of key drivers is good. Education is important but can be included elsewhere and I would have liked to have seen added value acknowledged."

The Government needed to focus on delivery and that was where the chamber could help spread the message to its members, he said.

New Zealand was small and subject to global pressures. It had become a nation of price takers, rather than price setters, so any help the Government could provide was welcome.

"The message has to be aspirational and people in the street need to understand it. If people can recognise the aspirations of the country, they will be prepared to upskill to contribute."

Mr McIntyre also welcomed Mr Joyce's commitment to produce progress reports later this year on each of the six areas, providing an account of the Government's actions and progress. The six reports would be released starting from June.



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