Economy of New Zealand
New Zealand is one of the most economically developed countries. GDP per capita approx. 20 thousand US dollars (according to the purchasing power parity of the currency, 2002). GDP growth rates are low (1-3% per year), but quite stable. Most of the population is employed in the service sector: 27% – in communal, social and personal services, St. 21% – in trade, restaurant and hotel business, approx. 11% in business and financial services, approx. 18% – in the manufacturing industry, approx. 10% – in agriculture, forestry and fishing (a relatively high share for a developed country, which indicates the role of these industries in the economy), about 6% each – in construction and in transport and communications. Unemployment in the 1990s – 7-11% (among the Maori – St. 20%), in the beginning. 21st century – a little over 5%. Inflation is in the range of 2-3% per year.
A feature of the economy is the important role of a highly developed export-oriented agriculture. The main branch is animal husbandry (sheep breeding and breeding of meat and dairy cattle). If the dairy industry and beef production are in a competitive state and continue to develop, then the number of sheep in the 1990s. decreased significantly due to problems marketing wool (and lamb) in world markets. In crop production, mainly fodder crops are cultivated. Fishing and fish processing are developing (a significant part of the products is exported). New Zealand wine is in increasing demand in the world market. Beekeeping is highly developed.
The main branches of the mining industry: coal and gas, as well as oil, gold, non-mineral raw materials (clay, sand, etc.).
The main branches of the manufacturing industry: food, textile, woodworking and pulp and paper, metallurgy, mechanical engineering, chemistry and electronics.
Most of the GDP is generated in the service sector.
The length of railway (narrow-gauge) roads is approx. 4 thousand km are mostly used for cargo transportation, but there are also passenger transportation (500 km are electrified). Out of 92 thousand km of roads, St. 53 thousand km – with a hard surface, incl. main highways – approx. 10.5 thousand km. The fleet includes more than 2.6 million cars and buses. The length of inland waterways is 1.6 thousand km, but they have practically no special economic significance. Due to the insular position of the country, maritime transport is of paramount importance (up to 99% of all foreign trade transportation). There are 13 well-equipped seaports, and a coastal fleet is also developed. The volume of domestic air transportation is up to 5 million passengers per year, international – 2.5 million. The largest international airport is Auckland, Christchurch can also receive B-747 aircraft. Airports in Wellington, Hamilton, Dunedin, Palmerston North and Queenstown are capable of accepting B-737 aircraft (carry out domestic and international flights). New Zealand is connected by intensive air communication with the whole world, but above all with Australia. It is also the gateway to the world for many South Pacific nations. There is intensive sea and air traffic between the country’s two main islands.
There are also pipeline transport of small length: 1 thousand km of gas pipelines, 160 km of oil product pipelines and 150 km of pipelines for liquefied petroleum gas. The means of communication and information technologies are intensively developing, bringing the country closer to the main world centers. In 2002, the number of Internet users in New Zealand exceeded 2 million people. (slightly more than 1/2 of the population).
New Zealand is a fast growing tourism market. For example, in 2000-02 alone, the number of South Korean tourists increased by 70%, to 100,000 a year. Intourism has become a major source of foreign exchange earnings (about 6 billion New Zealand dollars in 2002 – at the level of the country’s largest export items). In 2002, the influx of tourists exceeded 2 million people. (mainly from Australia, North America, UK and East Asia).
Foreign trade in goods and services is of increasing importance for the country, since the volume of the domestic market is small. Commodity export quota exceeds 28% (2001). New Zealand is one of the world’s leading exporters of dairy products (butter, cheese, etc.), wool, lamb, fruits (kiwi, apples, etc.), etc. More than 50% of export value falls on agricultural and food industry products. However, the importance of the products of the fish and wood processing industries, and mechanical engineering is increasing. The state and business are making significant efforts to find new niches in world markets and to diversify trading partners, especially with an eye on East Asia. Top three export markets (2001): Australia (18%), USA (15%) and Japan (13%). The share of the UK is 5% (compared to 25% or more before its accession to the EU). Imports consist of a wide range of finished products needed by a developed economy, especially machinery and equipment, as well as fuel, for the production of which there are not enough local resources to fully meet the needs of the country. Australia (22%), the USA (16%) and Japan (11%) also lead in imports (2001).
A serious problem for New Zealand remains the current account deficit. Its level – 5-6% of GDP – is the highest among the developed countries – members of the OECD.
Since 1984 New Zealand has begun deep liberal economic reforms following the Great Britain, the USA and Australia, having gone in their implementation in some respects further than their colleagues in the Anglo-Saxon world. Liberalization of foreign economic relations and the labor market, tax reform, privatization were carried out, for the first time a legislative act on a financially responsible government was adopted (in the preparation and adoption of the state budget), the full independence of the Reserve (central) bank was legally established, etc. Reforms with varying success and with acute internal political struggle were carried out until the end. 1990s, when the current Labor government came to power against the backdrop of reform fatigue, in some respects reversing social and economic reforms (particularly in the labor market). However, by ser. 1990s the results of the reforms have already fully manifested themselves, significantly transforming the “socialist economy under capitalism” (far behind the popular “Swedish model” in terms of socio-economic efficiency). In terms of the sectoral structure of the economy, the country has turned from a predominantly agrarian (albeit developed in this respect) into an industrial-agrarian one with a high level of modern service industries. The decline in GDP per capita was halted and its growth was outlined. According to the rating of economic freedom, New Zealand continues to rank in the top three among the states of the world.
Science and culture in New Zealand
According to ejiaxing, the education system is very ramified, characteristic of a developed country, mixed public-private. For children aged 6-16, education is compulsory and free. After graduating from public and private secondary schools, one can enter universities (8) and polytechnics (25). Higher education received approx. 1/3 finished school. There are special training programs for Maori.
The cultural life of the country is diverse. Literature, painting, musical art are developed. New Zealand cinema is becoming more and more famous in the world. Efforts are being made to preserve traditional Maori culture (Maori society still preserves rituals and customs, is headed by a monarch, and for the last 35 years by a queen). The temperate climate and landscape are conducive to sports. Among the national sports, the most popular are rugby (there are many Maori among the best players, the anthem of the national team is one of the militant Maori songs), cricket, golf, netball (a kind of basketball). Yacht racing and equestrian sports are also popular. Athletes of the country have achieved outstanding success in the international arena in rugby, yacht regattas, athletics, rowing, etc. A distinctive feature of the architectural appearance of the country is an extremely large number of religious buildings (churches, etc.) adjacent to each other. Among the famous New Zealanders are the first conqueror of Everest (1953) E. Hillary, one of the outstanding opera singers of our time Kiri Te Kanawa (Maori name), Nobel Prize winner E. Rutherford, who in 1919 split the atom for the first time.