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Economic Reform and Macroeconomic Policy in New Zealand

Graeme Wells

Australian Economic Review, 1990, vol. 23, issue 4, 45-60

Abstract: In 1984 the Labour government in New Zealand began a wide‐ranging process of reform with the objective of achieving a sustainable improvement in economic performance. The breadth and rapidity with which deregulation, tax reform, and privatisation were implemented has attracted widespread interest. The expected improvement in macroeconomic performance, however, has not yet been realised. This article describes some background to the policy shift, and focuses on macroeconomic aspects of the reforms. It argues that while many improvements in microeconomic resource allocation have been made, the interaction between monetary, fiscal and wages policies has contributed substantially to the present high cost of structural change in New Zealand.

Date: 1990
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