Wellington and Government have turned the corner towards Christmas and is sprinting towards the finish line with extra gusto this year, given the coming announcement of a new cabinet on Sunday and the jockeying of the players ahead of next year's election.
Responding to the Productivity Commission 's recommendation last week of a review of Section 36 of the Commerce Act, the Government has quietly included its plan for a review in the bowels of its second Business Growth Agenda progress report.
United Future Leader Peter Dunne, who would be the swing vote on any proposed amendment to the Credit Contracts and Financial Services Reform Bill, has said he would oppose any move to introduce interest rate caps.
The Commerce Committee has reported back the Credit Contracts and Financial Services Reform Bill from its committee stages, recommending some smaller changes, but not the interest rate caps used overseas and called for by the Opposition.
For the convenience of email subscribers, here's my full Herald on Sunday column, in which I doubt any of Countdown's behaviour will be prosecuted and the ugliness revealed in Shane Jones' allegation is a reflection of the Wal-Martisation of our supermarket industry.
Labour Commerce Spokesman Clayton Cosgrove pushed Commerce Minister Craig Foss again on Wednesday for an update on progress of the Commerce (Cartels and Other Matters) Amendment Bill designed to criminalise hard core cartel behaviour.
Shane Jones ramped up his attack on the 'Countdown Shakedown' under parliamentary privilege on Wednesday, zeroing in on an Australian manager working for Progressive in New Zealand, although he stopped short of naming him.
The Accounting Industry Reform Bill was read for the first time
Retiring Transpower CEO Patrick Strange was reappointed to the board of Mighty River Power, the board of Standards NZ was reappointed to keep it going while it's being disestablished, MBIE reported skilled job ads online rose 4.1% in November, Steven Joyce added 4,000 places for new apprentices to the Apprenticeship Reboot scheme and Craig Foss appointed Stephen McElrea to the board of NZ On Air. Foss also reappointed Mark Berry as Commerce Commission Chair.
Todd McClay delayed plans to amend Child Support rules for a year after IRD said it couldn't handle the complex changes in time, retiring Air NZ deputy CEO Norm Thompson was appointed to the board of Tourism NZ, Tariana Turia announced plans to introduce plain packaging legislation next year, Steven Joyce announced changes at Callaghan Innovation and Craig Foss flagged new regulations for the Financial Markets Conduct Act.