New Zealand businesses are feeling increasingly pessimistic about the state of the economy, according to the latest business confidence survey conducted by the Auckland Business Chamber.
“68% of business owners believe the current state of the New Zealand economy is either poor or very poor. Over half (54.5%) expect the economy to decline over the next 12 months, with only 14% expecting an improvement. An indication that the tough times are set to continue for the foreseeable future,” says Simon Bridges, CEO of the Auckland Business Chamber.
“When asked about the level of business confidence in New Zealand, 70% rated it as either very low or somewhat low. This lack of confidence is reflected in business owners’ attitudes towards their own businesses, with a worrying 39% expressing little or no confidence in their ability to grow over the next year.
“Meanwhile, businesses are grappling with a range of challenges, including a shortage of skilled workers, increasing supply chain costs, and the impacts of recent weather events. 50% of respondents are experiencing a shortage of skilled workers, while 72% expect to be negatively impacted by changes in interest rates and inflation.
“Price increases due to fuel, labour, and supply chain costs have left a crippling impact on many businesses, as a staggering 80% of the respondents have indicated that they have already increased prices or will need to increase prices.
“Despite these challenges, over 62% of respondents plan to maintain or increase their investment in capital expenditure. Additionally, more than 31% of business owners plan to hire more employees over the next 12months. However, there is still cause for concern as 12% of respondents plan to reduce their workforce, potentially leading to further job losses.
“The results of this survey show New Zealand businesses continue to struggle with significant challenges amidst the current economic climate. Confidence is on the decline, and rising costs are exerting mounting pressure. It’s crucial for political parties in this election year to propose concrete policies that promote growth, instil certainty, and restore confidence”, says Bridges.
For more information, please contact Simon Bridges on 021 322 769
Simon Bridges, Chief Executive, Auckland Business Chamber