Peter Conway's paper asks the question about whether in next Thursday's Budget we will see a ‘tax switch’ or a ‘tax swindle’. In particular it focuses on the impact of possible changes in the tax scales. Peter argues that the tax switch is built on poorly developed arguments around tax and economic growth and the connection between tax and labour mobility. He does agree with the arguments around the need for greater tax on property.
However Peter contends it is unfair if the benefit of these changes is overwhelmingly captured by those already on high incomes. Peter's paper can be downloaded here and you also get Papers and Presentations from previous Fabian lectures and seminars.
Last week's Christchurch Fabian 'Bold Choices' seminar is covered in today's Dom-Post:
On a sunny Sunday afternoon in Christchurch about 50 people gather to listen to four men preach what big business and government circles consider economic heresy.
The speakers are Business and Economic Research chief economist Ganesh Nana, hi-tech businessman Selwyn Pellett from Endace, Manufacturers and Exporters Association chief executive John Walley and business commentator Rod Oram.
They are all singing a similar song: The New Zealand economy is broken and needs a drastic policy shift to avert complete disaster brought on by ballooning foreign debt and a crippled export sector...
Selwyn Pellett was interviewed by Paul on 95bfm's wire about the context and implications of the proposed sale of the Crafar farms to overseas interests, providing a highly relevant example of the key points he raised in his recent seminar presentation.
Update: Also interviewed last week on this subject by David Beatson.
Some of the thought-provoking Bold Choices for a Better Future presentations are now available. These are only outlines of the content and you really need to register for the seminars to really appreciate the quality of the contributions and participate in the debate. You can use these links to get presentations from Ganesh Nana, John Walley, Selwyn Pellett and Rod Oram.
The Productive Economy Council and the New Zealand Manufacturers and Exporters Association (whose representatives, Selwyn Pellet and John Walley, feature in our 'Bold Choices for a Better Future' seminars) are maintaining momentum on the economic debate by sponsoring the inaugural Alternative Budget Competition which is open to all currently enrolled university students.
Your can read the full press release here