Outcome Three: Informed consumers and businesses interacting with confidence
MBIE progressed a number of work programmes in 2020/21 to ensure protections were in place to increase both consumers’ and producers’ confidence in economic participation. This is essential to economic growth and delivering broader social outcomes. We are proud of many improvements to services delivered to businesses.
Text version of outcome three – progress
For the first time since May 2021, Māori businesses can identify themselves as a Māori business on the NZBN register, which enabled them to connect and interact more easily and with more accuracy. CERT NZ supported businesses to get more cyber savvy and increase cyber security for their organisation. CERT NZ also published details of an active phishing campaign impersonating Inland Revenue to the threat feed. We also successfully rolled out the replacement for the Financial Service Provider Register in March 2021, which required complex legislative and technical handling. The replacement reflected new legislation that fundamentally changes the way financial advice is regulated and delivered in Aotearoa New Zealand.
A focus of our consumer protection work programme has been to increase awareness of consumer rights; the result of which was that 94 per cent of surveyed New Zealanders indicated they are aware there are laws in place to protect their consumer rights. As part of the Commerce (Criminalisation of Cartels) Amendment Act 2019 coming into effect from 2021, our work aims to deter and detect serious cartel behaviour including, preventing two or more businesses colluding to activities such as price fixing, allocating markets or rigging bids at the costs of consumers.
We worked closely with many businesses, especially small-to-medium sized businesses, to ensure the challenges they face are considered in the development of regulation and to deliver the tools and services they need to thrive. This resulted in one of our websites www.business.govt.nz being rated global frontrunner in creating a more supportive playing field for businesses. We also published the Responsible Lending Code to reflect changes to consumer credit legislation and provide greater clarity and flexibility in relation to borrowers facing significant uncertainty brought on by COVID-19.
Following the passing of the Building Amendment Bill (the first in a series reforms to the Building Act) in June 2021, we will continue to work on regulations to lift the efficiency and quality of building work and provide fairer outcomes if things go wrong. This was just an example of our programme of work to improve the quality and safety of buildings by ensuring a well-functioning building and construction market that delivers safe, healthy, affordable and fit-for-purpose residential and commercial buildings for people across Aotearoa New Zealand.
What we're working towards
Burden of government regulations on institutions
|Performance measure||Indicator||Current trend||Desired trend||Commentary|
|Increase consumer awareness||Percentage of adult consumers that know at least a moderate amount about their rights as a consumer||Steady||Increase||The percentage of adult consumers who felt that they knew at least a moderate amount about their rights as consumers was 45% in 2020 compared to 46% in 2018.|
|Increase consumer confidence in business||Percentage of adult consumers that agree that in New Zealand you can generally buy products and services and feel confident that businesses will do the right thing and not try to mislead or cheat you||Steady||Increase||The percentage of consumers who agreed that in Aotearoa New Zealand you can generally buy products and services and feel confident that businesses will do the right thing and not try to mislead or cheat you was 74% in 2020, the same as it was in 2018.|
|Improve access to dispute resolution services||Percentage of consumers that agree there is adequate access to services that help to resolve disputes between consumers and business||Increase||Increase||48% of consumers in 2020 agreed that there was adequate access to services that help resolve disputes between consumers and businesses. This is an increase from 2018 (44%).|
|Increase tenancy mediation satisfaction||Percentage of clients satisfied based on their last interaction with the tenancy mediation services||Decrease||Increase||The percentage of clients satisfied with the overall quality of tenancy mediation services was 69% in the year to June 2021, a decrease from 71% in 2020.
The ongoing impacts of COVID-19 and, in particular, the Auckland lockdowns may have impacted this result and influenced customers' perception of the overall experience of the dispute resolution system.
|Increase employment mediation customer satisfaction||The percentage of clients satisfied based on their last interaction with the employment mediation services||Increase||Increase||The percentage of clients satisfied with the overall quality of employment mediation services was 76% in the quarter to March 2021. This result is very similar to March 2019 (75%) and an improvement from March 2020 when it was 70%. Because of the COVID-19 response, the March 2020 data collection was delayed, so the results are not directly comparable to other quarters.|
|Improve the business experience when dealing with government||Customer Experience Index (CXI): The Better for Business CXI measures the quantity and quality of overall customer experiences for businesses when dealing with government or complying with government requirements. It ranges from 1 (least positive) to 100 (most positive).||Increase||Increase||The all-of-government CXI score was 57 in June 2021, an increase from 55 in June 2019 and the same as in June 2018.4|
|Improve the experience for applicants applying for visas||The percentage of visa applicants satisfied with their overall experience of applying for a visa||Decrease||Increase||The percentage of visa applicants satisfied with their overall experience of applying for an Immigration New Zealand visa was 76% in the year to June 2021. This is a decrease compared to June 2020, when the result was 78%. Overall satisfaction with the application experience continued to decline as the border remained closed and there were restrictions on entry.
In 2021, a total of 14,060 respondents completed the survey – a response rate of 39%. The result has a margin of error of ±0.71%. The survey was conducted by GravitasOPG (formerly Gravitas Research & Strategy).
In 2020, a total of 9,317 respondents completed the survey – a response rate of 35%. The result has a margin of error of ±1.0%. SurveyMonkey was used to collect results.
|Reduce burden of government regulations on institutions||The burden of government regulation index measures how burdensome it is for companies to comply with public administration requirements (1 = extremely burdensome, 7 = not burdensome at all).||N/A||Increase||There is no update for this measure in 2020/21 as the report was not published online in 2020 by the World Economic Forum.
In 2019/20 we reported that Aotearoa New Zealand’s value on this scale was 4.1 in 2019 (9th in the OECD), slightly lower than its value of 4.4 in 2018 (6th in the OECD).
4 No data was collected in 2020 because of COVID-19 impacts.