University of Auckland Public Policy Institute director Jennifer Curtin provided comments on the outcome of the Australian Federal election outcomes as the final ballots were counted.
Speaking on Newshub’s AM show, Professor Curtin discussed the impact of the Labor party election win after nine years of the Liberal Party of Australia in government. Although both countries are currently facing a cost of living crisis, Professor Curtin pointed to Labor leader Albanese’s election promise to raise the minimum wage by 5 per cent, already NZD 1.23 higher than New Zealand’s minimum wage, and to boost healthcare funding. These were likely to draw people to more New Zealand workers to move to Australia, as we have seen in the past, she said.
Reporting on Professor Curtin’s comments, the Daily Mail states that despite an annual increase in the New Zealand minimum wage under the current New Zealand government, the higher growth in the Australian minimum wage and the new Labor government are drawcards for New Zealander’s considering the move. This is supported by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s recent indication that wage growth will not compete with the inflation rate over the next year.
Commenting on what the election means for negotiations between Australia and New Zealand, Professor Curtin indicated via Stuff that commonalities in communication styles between Ardern and Albanese could make way for more open conversations.
Asked on Newstalk ZB if the change to a Labor government was a reaction to policy responses to the Covid-19 pandemic, Professor Curtin highlighted the divisive style of politics and inaction on climate change policy demonstrated by the Morrison government as major contributors to the shifts in voting, including the boost in votes toward ‘teal’ independents.