Opposition scoffs at govt's export target

Opposition parties are scoffing at the government's aim to increase exports by 10 per cent by 2025.



They're saying the plan looks like a school project and ministers are ignoring the biggest barriers exporters face.

Finance Minister Bill English says the target is a challenge but it can be achieved.

He released a report on Thursday explaining the government's approach, saying there will have to be a shift away from the production of goods and services for the domestic economy towards international markets.

Investment will have to flow into new opportunities created by rapidly rising incomes in Asian countries and the government will have to make it easier for businesses to access those markets.

Labour's economic development spokesman, David Cunliffe, says the government has been talking about increasing exports for four years and hasn't done anything about it.

"It has taken six ministers to come up with this and it looks like a school project," he said.

"Every year National comes up with another pretty brochure they call an economic plan but, as ever, there's no grunt."

Green Party co-leader Russel Norman says the plan doesn't even mention the problems caused by the high exchange rate.

"Our exporters struggle to compete because our dollar is over-priced and our domestic manufacturers are undercut by artificially cheap imports," he said.

Dr Norman says the government's agenda "actively undermines" New Zealand's clean, green brand for its exports.

"By gutting the emissions trading scheme, intensifying agriculture and pursuing their deep sea mining agenda the government is putting our clean, green brand at risk."