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  1. Policies that support a high degree of regulatory efficiency are in place. The entrepreneurial environment is one of the most competitive, with start-up companies benefiting from great flexibility in licensing and other regulatory frameworks. The labor regulations facilitate a dynamic labor market. New Zealand has a vibrant agriculture sector with the lowest subsidies of any OECD country. Business Freedom : 91.0 Labor Freedom : 86.7 Monetary Freedom : 87.5 The combined value of exports and imports is equal to 51.3 percent of GDP. The average applied tariff rate is 1.3 percent. As
  2. Private property rights are strongly protected, and New Zealand ranks among the world’s top countries for contract security. The judicial system is independent and functions well. New Zealand ranked first out of 180 countries surveyed in Transparency International’s 2017 Corruption Perceptions Index. The country is renowned for its efforts to ensure a transparent, competitive, and corruption-free government procurement system. Property Rights : 95.0 Government Integrity : 96.7 Judicial Effectiveness : 83.5 The top income tax rate is 33 percent, and the top corporate tax rate is 2
  3. The former British colony of New Zealand is one of the Asia–Pacific region’s more prosperous countries. The center-right National Party, led by Prime Minister John Key, returned to power in 2008 and won reelection in 2011 and 2014. When Key resigned, his deputy, Bill English, succeeded him in late 2016. Elections in September 2017 resulted in a hung parliament, with the “kingmaker” and populist New Zealand First party subsequently forming a minority coalition, enabling new Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s Labor Party to return to power. Far-reaching deregulation and privatization since the 1980
  4. New Zealand’s economic freedom score is 84.4, making its economy the 3rd freest in the 2019 Index. Its overall score has increased by 0.2 point, with higher scores for trade freedom and labor freedom narrowly exceeding declines in judicial effectiveness and monetary freedom. New Zealand is ranked 3rd among 43 countries in the Asia–Pacific region, and its overall score is far above the regional and world averages. A global leader in economic freedom, New Zealand has generally followed a long-term market-oriented policy framework that fosters economic resilience and growth. The new governme
  5. Australia - Fiscal Balance Australian government presents 2016/2017 budget, revises upwards expected fiscal deficits On 3 May, Australia Treasurer Scott Morrison presented the Federal budget to the Australian Parliament for fiscal year 2016/2017, which runs from 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2017. This is the first budget to be presented by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s administration and was announced approximately 60 days before the upcoming double-dissolution election that is scheduled to be held on 2 July. Aside from the political dimension surrounding the budget release, its actual conte
  6. Australia - Unemployment Employment rebounds sharply in November Seasonally-adjusted employment jumped by 39,900 in November, following a revised 24,800 job shed in October (previously reported: -19,000). November’s result beat market expectations of a 14,000 jobs addition and was driven by an increase in both full-time and part-time employment. Seasonally-adjusted unemployment inched down to 5.2% in November, reversing October’s uptick. Moreover, the seasonally-adjusted underemployment rate decreased to 8.3% in November, from 8.5% in October, while the seasonally-adjusted participati
  7. Australia - Public Debt Australian government presents 2016/2017 budget, revises upwards expected fiscal deficits On 3 May, Australia Treasurer Scott Morrison presented the Federal budget to the Australian Parliament for fiscal year 2016/2017, which runs from 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2017. This is the first budget to be presented by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s administration and was announced approximately 60 days before the upcoming double-dissolution election that is scheduled to be held on 2 July. Aside from the political dimension surrounding the budget release, its actual content
  8. Australia - Exports Goods and Services Growth disappoints in Q3, held down by weak domestic demand GDP expanded 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in seasonally-adjusted terms in Q2, following a revised 0.6% quarter-on-quarter increase in the second quarter (previously reported: +0.5% quarter-on-quarter), according to figures released by Australia’s Statistical Institute (ABS) on 4 December. The result disappointed market analysts’ expectations of a 0.5% quarter-on-quarter expansion and underlined soft growth dynamics. Meanwhile, on an annual basis, the economy grew 1.7%, marginally up from Q2’s revi
  9. Australia - Investment Growth disappoints in Q3, held down by weak domestic demand GDP expanded 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in seasonally-adjusted terms in Q2, following a revised 0.6% quarter-on-quarter increase in the second quarter (previously reported: +0.5% quarter-on-quarter), according to figures released by Australia’s Statistical Institute (ABS) on 4 December. The result disappointed market analysts’ expectations of a 0.5% quarter-on-quarter expansion and underlined soft growth dynamics. Meanwhile, on an annual basis, the economy grew 1.7%, marginally up from Q2’s revised 1.6% (previous
  10. Australia - GDP Australian gross domestic product (GDP) is the most important measure with which to evaluate the performance of Australia’s economy. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) publishes GDP figures on an annual and quarterly basis. The table below shows the change of price-adjusted GDP for Australia, typically referred to as Australia’s economic growth rate. Overview Gross domestic product (GDP) measures the economic performance of a country over a given period, typically a year or a quarter. It is therefore the most important economic indicator to evaluate the country
  11. Human Rights Commission Report 2010 The Human Rights Commission periodically releases an intensive report documenting human rights in New Zealand, mapping how they are being "promoted, protected and implemented." Of the thirty 'priority areas for action on human rights' released in the 2010 report, three were workplace and employment related. These included: Implementing a new framework for equal opportunities that addresses access to decent work for disadvantaged groups such as Maori, Pacific youth and disabled people Timetabling pay and employment-equity implementation with a minimu
  12. Minimum rights and entitlements A number of rights and entitlements arise from the various employment enactments. Under New Zealand law, an employee cannot be asked to agree to less than the minimum rights and obligations as provided by the law. An employee must have a written agreement and the minimum employment rights must be met whether or not they are included in this agreement. Minimum wage The minimum wage rates apply to all employees and must be paid if a person is over 16 years of age and not a starting-out or trainee worker. The wage rates are reviewed annually by the governm
  13. Other important labour related legislation includes: Health and Safety at Work Act 2015: This Act requires employers and employees to take steps to maintain a safe work place; Holidays Act 1981: This Act sets out minimum entitlements and requirements with regards to annual holidays, public holidays and special leave; Parental Leave and Employment Protection Act 1987: sets out entitlements of employees to parental leave. It currently gives employees 22 weeks of government funded parental (maternity) leave. Employees may also take an additional extended leave for child care (up to
  14. Human Rights Act 1993 The Human Rights Act 1993 expressly prohibits discrimination on certain stated grounds including sex, race, family status, political opinion and the like. It applies to almost all aspects of employment including job advertisement, application forms, interviews and job offers. It also applies to unpaid workers and independent contractors. The ERA expressly applies the HRA to employment matters. Discrimination Workplace discrimination is dealt with under the Human Rights Act 1993. Discrimination in employment can involve: Refusal or failure to offer and employ
  15. Employment Relations Act 2000 The Employment Relations Act 2000 (the "ER Act") is the most fundamental employment law statute in New Zealand. The ER Act repealed the Employment Contracts Act 1991 (the "ECA"). It enacts a number of core provisions on freedom of association, recognition and operation of unions, collective bargaining, collective agreements, individual employment agreements, employment relations education leave, strikes and lockouts, personal grievances, disputes, enforcement of employment agreements, the Mediation Service, the Employment Court, the Employment Relations Authorit
  16. Types of discrimination - Workplace In Victoria it is against the law to discriminate against an employee because of a personal characteristic that they have, or that someone assumes they have. Employees are protected from discrimination at all stages of employment including recruitment, workplace terms and conditions and dismissal. The personal characteristics protected by the law include: • age • parental and carer status • disability • employment activity • gender identity, lawful sexual activity and
  17. Workplace terms and conditions for employees As an employee, you have the right to workplace terms and conditions that are fair and non-discriminatory. You should have equal opportunity to apply for available jobs, higher duties, job rotation schemes and flexible working arrangements. Your background or personal characteristics should generally not influence an employer’s decision about your: employment as a permanent, casual, full-time or part-time worker hours of work wages, salary levels or remuneration packages any other terms and conditions offered to you at the start of
  18. Workplace dismissal rights for employees It is against the law for an employer to dismiss you or select you for redundancy because of a personal characteristic covered by the Equal Opportunity Act 2010 and federal anti-discrimination laws. However you can be dismissed at work if your: work performance is unsatisfactory employer has genuine financial and operational reasons. Age You cannot be cannot be retired because you have reached a certain age. Your employer also cannot threaten to retire you or do anything to make you retire because you have reached a certain age. T
  19. Flexible work for employees Flexible work arrangements are a popular and effective way to keep a balance between work and other commitments in your life. These arrangements can also boost productivity. Employers have a legal responsibility not refuse flexible work arrangements for an employee with parental or carer responsibilities, unless it is reasonable to do so in the circumstances. In practice, there are many different ways to implement flexible work arrangements. They may include arrangements around: when you work, for example starting and finishing work earlier or late
  20. Employee rights during recruitment and selection Under Victorian and federal anti-discrimination laws, if you are the best person for the job, you have the right to be appointed to that position, regardless of your background or personal characteristics. From advertising to interviewing to selection, the entire application process should be open and accessible, and not present barriers that could discourage you from applying. Disability rights If you have a disability or impairment, you also have rights at work, including during the recruitment stage. For example, an employer may nee
  21. Māori language in education While English is the dominant language of education throughout New Zealand, this was not always the case, and in recent years there have been ongoing efforts to raise the availability of Māori language education in New Zealand as one of New Zealand's three official languages. Prior to the arrival of the first European settlers in what would become New Zealand, traditional educational systems in Māori society (a ritual transfer of knowledge for most Māori, and the more formal whare wānanga—“house of learning”—model primarily for those of chiefly lineage) were
  22. State school enrollment schemes Geographically based state school enrolment schemes were abolished in 1991 by the Fourth National Government and the Education Amendment Act 1991. Although this greatly opened up the choice of schools for students, it had undesirable consequences. Popular high-decile schools experienced large roll growths, while less popular low-decile school experienced roll declines. Schools could operate a roll limit if there was a risk of overcrowding, but enrolments under this scheme were on a "first come, first served" basis, potentially excluding local students. Th
  23. Tertiary education Tertiary education in New Zealand is provided by universities, institutes of technology and polytechnics, private training establishments, industry training organisations, and wānanga (Māori education). It ranges from informal non-assessed community courses in schools through to undergraduate degrees and research-based postgraduate degrees. All post-compulsory education is regulated within the New Zealand Qualifications Framework, a unified system of national qualifications for schools, vocational education and training, and 'higher' education. The New Zealand Qualificatio
  24. Funding Primary and secondary State and state integrated schools are allocated funding from the Government on a per-student basis to fund the running of the school. Smaller schools receive additional funding due to the added fixed costs of running them compared to larger schools, and schools also receive funding based on the school's socio-economic decile rating, with low-decile schools (i.e. those in poorer areas) receiving more funds. They may also receive funds from other activities, such as hiring out school facilities outside school hours to outside groups. Schools also ask for a volu
  25. Primary and secondary education All New Zealand citizens, and those entitled to live in New Zealand indefinitely, are entitled to free primary and secondary schooling from their 5th birthday until the end of the calendar year following their 19th birthday. Education is compulsory between a student's 6th and 16th birthdays; however most students start primary school on (or shortly after) their 5th birthday, and the vast majority (around 84%) stay in school until at least their 17th birthday. In some special cases, 15-year-olds can apply for an early leaving exemption from the Ministry of Educ
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