City's population to slide as young chase jobs: Parker

20:26, Jun 30 2014

Young people leaving Southland after struggling to find jobs they want is a problem the region has to address, Labour deputy leader David Parker says.

Parker was in Invercargill yesterday, speaking with southerners about issues the region faced and the upcoming election.

People wanted to know what Labour would do to make their lives better, he said.

"The gaps are widening in New Zealand between the wealthy and less well off, or provinces and big cities."

An ageing population also contributed to a visible change in Invercargill's demographic.

"The Invercargill population is static, and over time it is projected it could go down. Too many young people can't get the jobs they want down here and leave town."

That problem needed to be addressed. Changes to capital gains taxes and Kiwisaver, proposed by Labour, could help that, he said. There was also a problem with money being generated in the region but not staying in the province because farms were owned by those out of town, he said.

There was a need for change to improve the economy and make it fairer, he said.

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The Southland Times