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The New Zealand Election 2023: What Small Business Owners Need to Know 

Published October 10, 2023 - NZ Operations Manager

The New Zealand election 2023 is about to reach crunch time, and the outcome is likely to have a significant impact on Kiwi small businesses.  

The two parties in contention to lead the country for at least the next 3 years are the Labour Party and the National Party. Labour is currently in power and is led by Prime Minister Chris Hipkins. National is the main opposition party and is led by Christopher Luxon. 

When it comes to deciding which party’s policies are more favourable to New Zealand’s small businesses, there are more intricacies than you can shake a ballot paper at. To simplify things and help small business owners prepare for the outcome, here are some of the key policy positions for each party. 


Both the Labour and National parties have announced plans to change the tax system. Labour has pledged to increase taxes on high-income earners and businesses that pollute the environment. In contrast, National has pledged to cut taxes for businesses of all sizes. 

These changes could have a significant impact on the bottom line of small businesses. If Labour is re-elected, small businesses in certain industries could face higher taxes. If National is elected, small businesses could benefit from reduced taxes.  


Labour has pledged to introduce new regulations to protect workers and consumers. National, meanwhile, has promised to reduce regulations on businesses. 

These changes could impact the way that small businesses operate and the costs that they incur. New regulations could increase the compliance burden for small businesses. Naturally, reduced regulations could decrease the costs of doing business for small businesses. 


Labour has pledged to invest in infrastructure such as roads, bridges, and broadband. National has plans to reduce government spending on infrastructure, instead dedicating more funding to the military. 

These changes could impact on the ability of small businesses to operate efficiently and to reach their customers. Better infrastructure could make it easier for small businesses to transport goods and services, and to connect with customers. Reduced government spending on infrastructure could lead to higher costs for small businesses and more commercial barriers. 


Labour has promised to increase funding for education and training, while National is committed to reducing government spending on education. 

In the medium-long term, these changes could impact the availability of skilled workers for small businesses. Increased funding for education and training could lead to a larger pool of skilled workers for small businesses to draw from. Reduced government spending on education could lead to a smaller pool of skilled workers for small businesses to draw from. 

Practical election tips for small business owners 

It is important for small business owners to stay informed about the issues and the candidates, which will help them vote for a party representing their best interests. They should also develop a plan for how they will respond to the outcome of the election. 

In addition to the general advice above, here are some additional tips for small business owners preparing for the New Zealand election 2023: 

  • Review your financial situation: This will help you to understand how any changes in tax policy or government spending could affect your business. 
  • Talk to your accountant and lawyer: They can provide you with advice on how to minimise the impact of any changes to the law on your business. 
  • Stay informed about the latest developments: There are a range of resources available to help small businesses stay informed about the election and the potential impact on their business. The New Zealand Chambers of Commerce, for example, provides a variety of information and resources designed to keep small business owners in the loop. 
  • Get involved in the political process: Small businesses can make their voices heard by attending political events, contacting their elected representatives, and making submissions to government inquiries. 

By following these tips, small business owners can prepare for the New Zealand election 2023 and ensure any changes to government policy don’t catch them off guard. 

Are you a Kiwi small business owner? Thousands of companies just like your trust Employsure to support them with their Employment Relations and Health & Safety obligations. Call our FREE Advice Line today on 0800 675 700 to get all your difficult questions answered by the experts.

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