- American regulatory nonsense facing would-be craft brewers;
- Zach Weinersmith on the aerodynamic qualities of infants;
- And, can we avoid all the catastrophes?
Interest.co.nz has been on a roll lately. Friday's Top 10 had more on the continued housing shortage in Christchurch. Bernard Hickey had a nice piece reminding folks outside of Auckland why Auckland supply shortages are bad for the whole country.
Interest also pointed me to this piece by Phil Taylor over at the Herald; I'd missed it when it came out in April. It quotes Ngai Tahu Property's Tony Sewell on the cost of building materials in New Zealand; Sewell argues all of the material costs are far lower in the US and contribute to the high cost of NZ housing.
I wonder why nobody's bringing in container loads of gib board and fittings.
Industry feedback on an options paper was due last December. At the time Smith indicated removing or reducing high duties on some imported building products, and reviewing anti-dumping duties were being looked at. The Government believes the price of plasterboard would reduce if duties were removed. The impact of nominal tariffs of 5 per cent on most items used in housing construction would have less impact because our free trade partners are already exempt or the levy they pay is being progressively reduced.
I don't buy that a 5% tariff, dumb as it is, can explain the cost differences between here and the States. It doesn't seem plausible that a risk-averse building industry's driving things either: if it were possible, somebody else would be bringing in the container loads of American gib board, showing the builders that it's perfectly fine, and selling it at a fraction of the NZ price. Some other impediment must be there blocking it.