23 Oct 2011

Economist Sir Frank Holmes dies

5:17 pm on 23 October 2011

Prominent economist Sir Frank Holmes has died in Upper Hutt after a short illness.

He was 87.

Sir Frank played a leading role in New Zealand economics throughout the 1960s and 70s and was the author of several books on economics and trade.

He graduated with a Master of Arts in economics from Otago University before going on to lecture at Victoria University and eventually becoming an Emeritus Professor.

Sir Frank was the recipient of several awards, including the Carnegie and Fulbright Fellowships in the 1960s.

He was knighted in 1975 for his contribution to economics and education.

As an economist, he was a founding chair of the Monetary and Economic Council and chaired the Planning Council for a time in the 1970s.

Political commentator Colin James says Sir Frank advocated a more open economy at a time when it wasn't fashionable.

Mr James says Sir Frank was an early advocate of freer trade, and then free trade, with Australia and he was active in developing the initial thinking on cooperation in Asia and a great deal of New Zealand's external relations.

Sir Frank is survived by his son Ross Holmes, nine grandchildren and twelve great grandchildren.