Maori unemployment down – its time to strengthen the economy


Maori unemployment down – its time to strengthen the economy: NZ Maori Council / Unemployment data released

“Now this obviously defies all those nonsense two bit economists out there that like to trade in the art of doom and gloom when it comes to data – my message to them is get off your hobby horses. Your mates lost the last election and all youre doing is feeding the negative. As for business and industry this is a clear indicator that the economy remains robust, we have an opportunity to grow and build and this also means addressing the underlying social issues related to long term unemployment.” Tukaki said

The New Zealand Maori Council has welcomed the release of the latest employment data showing that Maori unemployment is trending down and the overall unemployment rate is also down. Council Executive Director, Matthew Tukaki (who also the former head of the worlds oldest and largest employment companies, Drake International) has said the programs instituted by the Government are beginning to take hold and has also lamented on the state of business confidence in New Zealand:

“One of the first five top priorities of any Government needs to be employment with a targeted series of programs related to long term unemployed – that includes Maori. The fall to just below 8% should be welcomed by us all but we need to remain vigilant.” Tukaki said. Tukaki is also Chair of the Councils National Taskforce for Access to Industry and Employment.

“There are a couple of things we want to really see taking hold from here. The first is reducing longer term unemployment for Maori down to below 6% and then being on trend or just above the average for the general population rate and also investment in more programs shifting the dial – by that I mean seeing the net average wage per week amongst Maori rise and also the shift from our people being part of the low wage and low skill side of the economy to highly valuable skills and wage growth.” Tukaki said

“The programs run by Ministers Willie Jackson and Shane Jones to motivate and encourage our people into employment is being dove tailed by the growth in small business across the regions and provinces that really do reflect the investment being made.” Tukaki said

The unemployment rate was 3.9 per cent in the June 2019 quarter, down from 4.2 per cent in the March 2019 quarter, Stats NZ said. On the wages front, private sector wage inflation – including overtime - rose 0.8 percent in the quarter for a 2.2 per cent annual increase.

“Now this obviously defies all those nonsense two bit economists out there that like to trade in the art of doom and gloom when it comes to data – my message to them is get off your hobby horses. Your mates lost the last election and all youre doing is feeding the negative. As for business and industry this is a clear indicator that the economy remains robust, we have an opportunity to grow and build and this also means addressing the underlying social issues related to long term unemployment.” Tukaki said

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