EMA: Requests for restructuring, redundancy support continue to rise

EMA gets 30 calls a week from employers over restructuring, redundancy

EMA: Requests for restructuring, redundancy support continue to rise

Calls for support from employers on restructuring and redundancy continue to go up as employers seek to cut costs amid an economic slowdown, according to the Employers and Manufacturers Association (EMA).

"Calls to our AdviceLine have increased by 70% year-on-year and our support team is receiving an average of 30 calls a week from businesses looking for help around restructuring and redundancy,” said EMA Head of Advocacy Alan McDonald in a statement.

"Inevitably, this will be reflected in the unemployment rate, which we expect to rise over the next year as businesses continue to respond to the economic slowdown."

McDonald made the remarks as New Zealand slipped into a recession after the gross domestic product shrank by 0.1% during the October to December period, according to Stats NZ.

According to McDonald, the recession is not a surprise given the difficult economic environment for many businesses due to inflationary pressures, high interest rates, and low consumer confidence.

"Not only are sales falling but business costs and bad debts are rising, and this is forcing many to look at where they can reduce their outgoings," he said.

Supporting employers

To assist businesses, McDonald said the government's upcoming budget should focus on rebuilding the economy and business confidence.

"That means continuing steps to encourage investment, cut red tape, and reduce costs. A healthier economy supports increased investment in our social services," he said.

McDonald put more emphasis on New Zealand's manufacturing industry, which recently entered its 12th straight month of contraction, the longest since the Global Financial Crisis in 2008-09.

"Manufacturing is still incredibly important to the economy, responsible for 10% of GDP, 60% of exports, and employing 12% of our workforce. It is no surprise, therefore, that when our manufacturers are struggling so does our economy," he said.

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