NZ First eyes export tax cut

Last updated 16:08 08/04/2013

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New Zealand First leader Winston Peters says his party wants to cut the corporate tax rate for exporters from 28 per cent to 20 per cent.

Peters made the comments on how the party would support the manufacturing sector, at a gathering of businessmen at the Canterbury Club in Christchurch today.

Peters lambasted the National Government for its "almost wilful disdain for the manufacturing sector".

"In the face of multiple pressures on the sector including a chronically over-valued dollar and intense international competition, the Government has persisted in turning the proverbial blind eye," he said.

Peters said there was clear evidence that countries which "make things" were much more resilient. Per-worker manufacturing was worth $66,235 to gross domestic product compared with tourism worth just $35,636.

The returns from manufacturing were huge and abandoning the manufacturing sector was "economic suicide".

Peters said some of the steps the party would take to support manufacturing included:

- Monetary policy reform to tackle the over-valued dollar which involved amending the Reserve Bank Act.

- Give preference to New Zealand firms in Government procurement

- Accelerated depreciation for plant and equipment

- Capital guarantee scheme for small to medium enterprises

- Reintroduce tax credits for research and development

Peters said a change to the Reserve bank Act was urgently needed to give the bank greater flexibility to bring the dollar down to a realistic rate. Last year New Zealand First's bill to do that failed by only one vote.

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