Advocacy Report Reader

Employment Relations

Consultation on ACC’s Accredited Employers’ Programme

Published: November 6, 2022

Submitting To: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE)

Issue for Business: ACC is recommending changes to the Accredited Employers Programme which allows large employers to cover their employees’ claims for work injuries in return for a reduction in their ACC employer levies. BusinessNZ's submission to MBIE responds to the proposed changes.


Taxation (Annual Rates for 2022-23, Platform Economy and Remedial Matters) Bill

Published: October 31, 2022

Submitting To: Finance and Expenditure Select Committee

Issue for Business: While the Bill covers various tax issues, BusinessNZ has concentrated its discussion in relation to both information reporting and GST for the platform economy, as well as Fringe Benefit Tax changes for certain public transport fares subsidised by an employer.

Action: Submission sent to Select Committee.

Outcome: Awaiting Select Committee report.


Inefficient Price Discrimination in very large contracts

Published: October 31, 2022

Submitting To: Electricity Authority

Issue for Business: In August 2021, the Electricity Authority (EA), in conjunction with their review into the wholesale market, released a paper on the possibility of Inefficient Price Discrimination within very large contracts of electricity, in particular, contracts with 150MW>. The EA believed contracts like Tiwai resulted in higher bills for consumers. BEC submitted that there remains insufficient evidence to prove this claim. The EA announced intervention in August this year, with a proposal to amend the code.

Action: BEC responded to this proposed code amendment in opposition for four reasons. Firstly, it would likely create uncertainty and regulatory risk, hurting investor sentiment in New Zealand (an extra barrier to investment in matters like hydrogen) . Secondly, the proposal was overly and unnecessarily intrusive, especially clause 13.271, which allows the EA to request ANY information. Thirdly, the proposal limits contractural freedom. Lastly, there remains insufficient evidence to prove generators sell below cost.

Outcome: Awaiting the Authority's decision

Export & Trade

Three Year Review of the CPTPP – Inclusive Trade Action Group

Published: September 30, 2022

Submitting To: Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFaT)

Issue for Business: At the time of signing the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), New Zealand, together with Canada and Chile, signed the Joint Declaration on Fostering Progressive and Inclusive Trade (attached). The Joint Declaration founded the Inclusive Trade Action Group and, amongst other provisions, committed New Zealand to reviewing the effectiveness of the CPTPP three years after entry into force. MFAT asked for input into this review process.

Action: ExportNZ wrote a letter to MFAT with our feedback on the impact of the CPTPP on inclusive trade.

Outcome: MFAT will finalise their review in October 2022.

Export & Trade

Modernising Our Export Assurances Systems: Legislative Options

Published: September 29, 2022

Submitting To: Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI)

Issue for Business: MPI requested feedback on legislative options for food and fibre exports to help them regulate in response to overseas market access requirements.

Action: ExportNZ and the New Zealand International Business Forum wrote in support of Legislative Option One which would allow for for the legislation for new export requirements to be put in place for food and fibre exports that are outside the scope of the Animal Products Act and Wine Act.

Outcome: Awaiting the next stage of the process, expect MPI to have selected an option and will consult again.


Targeted Consultation for FENZ Levy Exemptions

Published: September 1, 2022

Submitting To: Department of Internal Affairs (DIA)

Issue for Business: DIA are currently undertaking targeted consultation on types of property that should/could be exempt from paying Fire and Emergency NZ (FENZ) levies under contracts for fire insurance.

Action: BusinessNZ has submitted to DIA stating that while attempts to exempt some property types from paying a levy to fund FENZ is probably justified, continuing to charge levies based on fire insurance contracts is fundamentally flawed. There are many property owners and others who use the services of the FENZ but pay nothing towards FENZ costs, including Government who often self-insure against fire damage to property. BusinessNZ also considers that the Government should also contribute far more for public good activities, such as flood clean-ups.

Outcome: Awaiting Govt decisions after submissions have been analysed by DIA and recommendations made.

Export & Trade

ExportNZ Letter of Support for the UK-NZ Free Trade Agreement Legislation Bill

Published: August 21, 2022

Submitting To: Parliamentary Foreign Affairs, Defence, and Trade Select Committee

Issue for Business: Export New Zealand (ExportNZ) welcomes the opportunity to submit on the international treaty examination of the UK-NZ Free Trade Agreement (UK-NZ FTA).

Action: ExportNZ wrote, for the second time, to the FADT Select Committee in support of the passing of the UK Free Trade Agreement Legislation Bill and the ratification of the UK-NZ Free Trade Agreement.

Outcome: Awaiting next Reading in the House


Advanced Manufacturing Industry Transformation Plan

Published: July 22, 2022

Submitting To: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE)

Issue for Business: MBIE has consulted with the public on a plan of suggested work to accelerate the growth and transformation of the advanced manufacturing sector in New Zealand.

Action: BusinessNZ wrote in support of the goals outlined in the ITP and commented specifically on the chapters on; making the RSI system work for advanced manufacturing, attracting and developing a skilled workforce, and enhancing global connectivity and opportunities.

Outcome: Awaiting the final draft of the ITP.


Supporting NZ’s Economic Stability – Consultation on 5-year review of the Remit that guides monetary policy decisions

Published: July 13, 2022

Submitting To: Reserve Bank of New Zealand

Issue for Business: The Reserve Bank is legislated to achieve price stability and support maximum sustainable employment as the goals of monetary policy. The Reserve Banks specific operating guidelines from the Government for achieving this purpose are contained in the monetary policy Remit. The Consultation document looks at the merits of including other factors within the remit such as House Price Stability, Distributional Outcomes and Climate Change.

Action: BusinessNZ has made a submission expressing concern about the potential for the Reserve Bank to lose focus on its principal objective of Price Stability if a lot of new areas are covered within the Remit. It is also important that the Reserve Bank maintains credibility with the general public in respect to maintaining price stability.

Outcome: The Reserve Bank will be reviewing submissions on the Consultation Document over the next couple of months before outlining a draft proposal for further consultation later this year.

Environment & Infrastructure

Proposed Changes to the Wetland Regulations

Published: July 8, 2022

Submitting To: Ministry for the Environment (MfE)

Issue for Business: Government is revising the wetland regulations given the potential unintended consequences of the initial regulations

Action: BusinessNZ has made a submission generally supporting the proposed changes but suggesting further changes to ensure the regulations do not hinder economic development.

Outcome: Awaiting introduction of final regulations

Export & Trade

New Zealand’s Participation in the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity

Published: June 20, 2022

Submitting To: Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFaT)

Issue for Business: MFAT have asked for submissions on New Zealand's participation in the US-initiative "Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity". The Framework is designed to re-engage the US in the Indo-Pacific through four pillars: Fair & Resilient Trade; Supply Chain Resilience; Infrastructure, Clean Energy, & Decarbonisation; and Tax & Anti-Corruption.

Action: ExportNZ believes there are significant opportunities and positive outcomes for New Zealand should it be involved in the Framework and we, therefore, lend our initial support to New Zealand’s participation in IPEF. In particular, ExportNZ supports New Zealand’s participation in three of the four pillars: Fair & Resilient Trade; Supply Chain Resilience; and Infrastructure, Clean Energy, & Decarbonisation.

Outcome: Awaiting Decision from MFAT on NZ Participation.


Public Consultation on Working for Families Tax Credits

Published: June 6, 2022

Submitting To: Ministry of Social Development

Issue for Business: BusinessNZ has long held the view that Working for Families (WFF) represents a highly inefficient mechanism in which working New Zealanders receive additional financial support. Instead, an obvious means of addressing this issue is to leave the value of government assistance in people’s pockets in the first place. This means adjusting tax rates and thresholds rather than introducing new ways of distributing the tax take. Except for those genuinely unable to work, this would act as a primary incentive to work. It would also mean that increases in net income would need to be achieved through effort and productivity. At the very least, BusinessNZ believes the Government needs to take a step back and undertake a long overdue comprehensive root and branch review of WFF. We believe this would create a formal platform to discuss the significant inefficiencies that have plagued the policy since it began.

Action: In progress.