Commercial property changes are reckless and destructive

Wed, 29 Sep, 2021

“The Government’s rushed commercial property laws will erode New Zealand’s reputation as a safe place to invest,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“We have a Government of clueless children. They haven’t a clue what impact their jerky policies have. Like their oil and gas ban, they are telling investors in New Zealand and the world, don’t come here.

“The damage this Government is doing is profound. A future Government can change the laws back, but no policy change can restore the confidence that this Government has shattered with its banana republic policy making.

“This is not only bad policy but executed badly. The Government should have consulted and signalled the changes it was making – not just drop them like a bomb on centuries of contract law.

“Secure property rights are essential for investment, which is essential for any country that wants to be wealthy. South American and African countries struggle to attract investment because they have a history of governments changing the rules. Our Government is behaving like them.

“Why would anyone want to invest in country that is filled with uncertainty and where contractual arrangements can change at the drop of a hat?

“ACT has been calling for weekly resurgence payments through levels 3 and 4, and level 2 for hospitality as businesses lost most or all of their income through no fault of their own. That is what would have made a difference here.

“Instead, the Government has left business owners unable to pay their rent.

“The retrospective effect will undermine confidence and investment, just like the interest deductibility changes did. The lack of regulatory impact analysis is just another example of a Government out of its depth.”