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Brislen on Tech this week

Paul Brislen, Editor. 11 November 2016, 10:00 am

Trump card

Trump. What is there to say? A presidential candidate who has no experience of working in political office, has limited and contradictory understanding of technology, doesn't use a computer and is told not to use social media by his handlers is now in charge of the US economy.

Between claiming he wants to shut down the internet, protect the internet, remove net neutrality, stop the Russians spying on America, helping the Russians spy on America, arresting people for keeping email on private servers and raising the tariffs on Chinese produced electronic items (that is, all of the electronic items on sale in the US more or less) he's going to have a busy first term and that's assuming he doesn't follow through with his immigration policies, his economic policies and his wall-building policies.

Where does that leave New Zealand? It's hard to say anything definite at this stage but whatever happens next we certainly are living in interesting times.

Techblog - Trumped: What does it mean for the tech sector?

Techblog - Google watching election with interest

NBR - Market shrugs off Trump victory



One outcome from Trump's win seems almost certain. The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is unlikely to proceed in its current form.

Trump has repeatedly opposed the multinational trade deal despite being scant on detail and while ITP has had reservations about the deal throughout the negotiating rounds, it had finally reached the point of being the least worst deal on offer for most of the participants.

That's likely to be thrown out now and given how long it took to get to this point it's unlikely we'll see a replacement any time soon.

NZ Herald - Stunned Prime Minister John Key: Election bad for TPP

Observer - Top Trump-Backing Senator Declares the Trans Pacific Partnership 'Dead'

NBR - Key admits TPP odds now 'very close to zero'

Techblog - So what's really in the TPP for Tech? (August 2015)


Labour policy

Labour has announced its ICT policy and its main aim is to grow the industry to rival dairying, although the release stops short of suggesting New Zealand ICT take over the top spot.

Labour is proposing 60 different items, including controversially a levy on those businesses that don't train their staff.

Labour's finance spokesman Grant Robertson said the absence of skilled workers was the number one issues businesses raised with the Future of Work Commission.

"We can't rely on the market to provide, or immigration alone, to import our solutions."

The report addresses the role New Zealand's government plays in purchasing ICT services as well as enabling ICT companies to operate, but doesn't address the impending issue of the "jobless economy" with automation hollowing out many formerly well paid jobs.

The report does take aim at Callaghan Innovation for not delivering on its promise. The report says Callaghan's "performance has been poor", taking three years to define its strategic direction has been "too slow", and its growth grant process is "unfocused".

The report also reins in Labour's research and development tax credit policy somewhat - allow tax deductions only for wages and salaries instead of an open slather approach.

NBR - Plans afoot to make ICT second-biggest economic contributor

Stuff - Training levy, push on ICT part of Labour's future of work plan

TVNZ - Labour proposing new tax targeting business employing foreign workers

NBR - Technology could disrupt 80% of insurance jobs, academic predicts


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