Senior business leaders calling for more clarity on the country's Covid recovery strategy say they want to work with the Government and are seeking an "open source" approach to information sharing.
"We all know how difficult it must be to focus on the longer-term issues when you are dealing with day-to-day lockdown issues, particularly when you have a very limited team," said Patrick Strange, chairman of Chorus NZ and Auckland Airport.
But it was vitally important that the government provide transparency on its emerging strategy, he said.
"This will give every sector, not just business, a chance to comment and contribute, and buy-in.
"Clearly, the government is responsible for the final strategy and we all want them to be successful, but they will get a much stronger outcome (and buy-in) if they do it in an open source sort of way."
The high powered group of business leaders today released a statement calling for more clarity around the Government strategy.
It included Strange; Mercury Energy chair Prue Flacks; The Warehouse Group chairwoman Joan Withers; chairman of SkyCity, Summerset and Tourism Holdings Rob Campbell; and University of Auckland chancellor and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare chairman Scott St John.
Campbell said it was wrong to characterise the call as some kind of demand and it was done with positive intent.
"The suggestions and requests we are making of Government are positive proposals on working together," he said.
"I have seen them referred to as "demands" but that is quite the opposite of what they are. This is about respecting what each part of our community brings to the issue and working together, not demanding things from each other."
Campbell said an "open source" exchange of data and planning made sense for both government agencies and business.
"Our businesses are making large capital and operating investments all the time. To do this we are planning around a range of scenarios and to be effective these must link to the best government ministry and agency planning. It's no use both of us working in the dark," he said.
"When it comes to delivery of services, goods or even information, business has expertise and capabilities, which ministries and agencies - already pressed on delivering their normal service - may lack."
Withers voiced concerns about the resilience of small business.
Big businesses had the capacity to deal with the uncertainty and change of Covid-19, but smaller businesses that they worked with didn't have the same resilience, she said.
Business was ready and willing to play its part in ensuring New Zealand's long-term success in managing Covid-19 and building the resilience in New Zealand necessary to cope with potential future pandemics.
"We have all discussed this widely with other chairs and colleagues and believe there is widespread support across New Zealand for our approach," Withers said.
The call has been backed by other business groups.
EMA chief executive Brett O'Riley said business owners were being crippled by increasing pressure and costs from the ongoing series of lockdowns.
"It's great to see the major businesses in our community recognising the strain on the SME sector and showing their willingness to add support and resources to assist the Government in managing the ongoing, long-term challenges presented by COVID-19," he said.
"The Government should accept that offer and begin sharing its plans for the future management of the pandemic."
Speaking on Newstalk ZB this morning Finance Minister Grant Robertson said he would look at the group's comments.
"They've been heavily involved in the response so we'll take a look at what they're saying and make sure that they get involved as well."