Treasury BIM links economy to quality of life

A question from the floor at a public meeting in Wanaka three years ago asked then National Party leader Don Brash why he always talked about money and the economy rather than things that mattered like health and education.

He responded that a growing economy was the means to provide better social services.

This is echoed in Treasury’s Briefing to the Incoming Minister of Finance  :

Future gains to economic growth will need to be driven by increases in productivity growth. Improving productivity will have benefits for individuals, businesses and for society as a whole. A more productive New Zealand will offer our people opportunities to earn world-class incomes without having to go overseas to achieve this. It will allow New Zealand businesses to provide sophisticated products to the world without having to relocate their head offices. Higher incomes will underpin a public sector that can provide high-quality services, which will lead to improved social outcomes in crucial areas such as health and education.

Higher productivity will make New Zealand a more attractive place to live, work and do business with and from.

That reminds me of this quote from Margaret Thatcher:

No one would remember the Good Samaritan if he’d only had good intentions; he had money as well.

This is a simple concept but achieving the economic growth we need to provide the standard of living and social services we want is more complicated and we can’t leave it all to government.

They can implement policies which enable and encourage improved productivity but they can’t create wealth, thats up to people and businesses.

3 Responses to Treasury BIM links economy to quality of life

  1. bobux says:

    In my experience, those who insist that ‘money doesn’t matter’ are the first to complain when they find that drug treatments available in Australia aren’t available here, or that some worthy programme begs for donations because government funding is inadequate.

    It isn’t exactly rocket science, which makes me wonder why some people find it so hard to understand?


  2. Gary says:

    I hope they didn’t have to come up with that section just for the new minister! It should be standard background info for any incoming minister, though the way the last government acted, it either wasn’t included or they ignored it!

    For that matter, it should be compulsory reading for any MP, so they have a better understanding of what it really takes to be able to afford all the things they would like to do…


  3. Rob Hosking says:

    That question you cite comes up a lot and it never fails to make me see red.

    The assumption seems to be that MRI scanners and other highly technical and expensive health equipment will somehow happen by magic if we all think nice warm and fluffy thoughts about health and welfare rather than nasty mean and ugly thoughts aout the economy.


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