Robertson on what the Government hopes to get out of Davos

Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Thursday, 17 January 2019, 8:36PM
The conference will focus on how technology is changing the economy. (Photo / File)

The Prime Minister and Finance Minister are using their trip to Davos to make an important visit to Brussels.

Jacinda Ardern and Grant Robertson head to the World Economic Forum in Switzerland next week.

They'll then travel to Brussels, where they'll shore up support for FTA negotiations - and work on a deal for Kiwi exporters.

Robertson will meet with EU officials and members of the European Parliament, to discuss the free trade agreement and Brexit.

"The priority for New Zealand has been prepared for that outcome, make sure our relationships are not only strong with the UK, but also the other members of the EU."

He says it won't be an easy road, but it is an important one.

"We're across the start line."

While in Davos, Robertson will also be chairing a talk on Government Future of Work.

He says this is on how we need to prepare to retrain people and prepare for a loss of jobs due to technological changes.

"We can't stop it, but we have to get alongside it and make sure people have fulfilling jobs in the future."

He says there is a 10-15 timeframe before this becomes a major issue. While we can't predict the future, Robertson says its important for us to know how to prepare for it.

"There are ministers from similar sized economies to New Zealand. We can learn a lot about how they are making the adjustment to not only issue like new technology but also climate change, globalisation."

The two will also be travelling to the UK.

While there, Robertson will talk about it at the London School of Economics about his wellbeing budget.

He says it's a different approach to measuring success, and is not just about GDP growth.

"But also about how our people and our environment and our communities are going. I've been invited to give a talk about that in London and meet with some other people who work on that wellbeing economics area, so that will be really exciting."


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