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Labour to build on its tax record

Bill English National Party Leader

5 July 2002

Labour to build on its tax record

National Party Leader Bill English says Labour can't be trusted on tax.

"Before the last election, Labour promised no new taxes for the 95 per cent of people who earn less than $60,000 a year.

"However, Budget tables (page 89 of the 2002 Budget Economic and Fiscal Update) show that in order to keep within its $6.1 billion fiscal cap, it has had to raise almost another $900 million in new tax. This is on top of what was raised from the new 39-cent marginal tax rate.

"This included increases in excise and petrol tax.

Mr English says these new taxes have hit low and middle-income families the hardest - the very people Labour claims it represents.

"Helen Clark has again signed a pledge card claiming no new taxes. Since then Labour has revealed plans for a health tax and more petrol tax increases.

"This makes a nonsense of the pledge card. We now know Labour will feel free to increase any tax the card doesn't mention and it will increase income tax by calling it a health tax.

"Michael Cullen has always argued that higher taxes are better than lower taxes for economic growth.

"However, more taxes are just part of Labour's hidden agenda for its second term. Anti-business and low growth policies such as pay equity, general strikes, higher inflation and higher interest rates are all on the cards if Labour is returned to government," Mr English says.


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