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Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of our communities with 97 per cent of all New Zealand enterprises employing 20 or fewer people.

National knows that it is businesses that drive economic growth and build a more successful economy with more jobs and higher wages for Kiwis.

That’s why since coming into office the National-led Government has been focused on supporting a competitive and productive economy.  It’s why we are continuously searching out ways to reduce the financial and time burdens that small businesses face.

We have, for example, cut ACC levies, introduced 90-day trials and a starting-out wage, and funded the roll-out of faster broadband. We’ve set up free online tools and advice from across government to save you time and help make your business a success. And in Budget 2016 we introduced a SME friendly tax package.

We’re responsibly managing the Government’s books and have posted the second surplus in a row.  New Zealand is now just one of a very small group of countries that has the books in surplus and a growing economy.

Our policies are helping keep the cost of living low and interest rates at near record lows making it easier for small businesses to invest and employ more people.

A survey of 1000 small and medium-sized enterprises reveals 57 per cent regard National as the best party for their business to succeed. The Labour Party was back on 10 per cent. MYOB, the business software firm which conducted the survey, says it shows real confidence in Prime Minister John Key and Finance Minister Bill English and the economic environment they are creating.

The positive sentiment is borne out in other recent data. New Zealand now tops the World Bank rankings for ease of doing business. The No. 1 ranking highlights the good work this Government is doing to reduce the cost of doing business. The World Bank report also notes New Zealand’s strength in procurement through our online procurement process and that we have made paying taxes easier and cheaper.

Statistics New Zealand reports most industries and regions have more businesses and staff than last year. And the ANZ survey of job advertisements shows the numbers keep going up with a strong lift in employment intentions in many of the regions.

The services sector, which makes up 70 per cent of the economy, and manufacturing are both expanding and have the highest growth against the likes of Australia, Japan, China, the UK, Europe and the United States.

Thanks to the entrepreneurship and hard work of New Zealanders supported by the Government’s economic plan and responsible financial management our economy is growing with more jobs, and rising wages.

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