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Cullen on Standard and Poor’s report

7 December 2005 Media Statement

Cullen on Standard and Poor’s report

Finance Minister Michael Cullen today welcomed Standard and Poor’s decision to reaffirm New Zealand’s high credit risk ratings.

“The ratings agency cites New Zealand’s stable political environment, conservative budgetary management and strong fiscal position as strengths but expresses concern at our persistently high current account deficits, high exposure to commodity price cycles and high private sector indebtedness.

“The report underlines the importance of generating a stronger savings culture, increasing labour productivity and broadening the economic base in New Zealand. The government is working actively across all these fronts.

“It also reinforces the need for the government to continue to run a stable fiscal policy,” Dr Cullen said.

ENDS

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