New Zealand to indulge in protectionism now?

Just when I thought that the suggestions from the Job Summit couldn’t get to much worse (given my faith in the current government not to go all Muldoonist on me), some suggestions on the tourism fund have come out.

Subsidised airline tickets for travellers from countries such as Britain and the United States are also being suggested

Hopefully this is just the Dom Post talking a bit of rubbish – because it isn’t in New Zealand’s interest to become protectionist now.  This is protectionism after all – we are subsidising our tourism exports in order to arbitrarily make them more competitive.

If we want tariffs on beef and lamb to be removed, we should avoid implementing our own tariffs/subsidies.  I believe that asking for greater free trade and then introducing protectionism is officially termed “hypocrisy” – I’m hoping we don’t head down that road.