Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Dr Cullen maintains tradition of tax-cut denial

Bill English MP
National Party Finance Spokesman

12 November 2007

Dr Cullen maintains tradition of tax-cut denial

National Party Finance spokesman says Michael Cullen's strongly held view that tax cuts make no difference to the trans-Tasman brain-drain is not new.

"Dr Cullen has always maintained that tax makes no difference to the decision by a growing number of Kiwis that they should pack up and leave."

In the heat of the 2005 election campaign, Dr Cullen put his real feelings down on paper when he said: 'If, as some have suggested, New Zealanders are fleeing as tax exiles to Australia, one can only conclude that those individuals are functionally innumerate, and we are probably better off without them.' **

Mr English says Dr Cullen's message has always been that there's no way New Zealand can win, so there's no point even trying.

"So, instead of working tirelessly to try to close the gap, Labour has become pre-occupied with staying in power. That's the only reason Helen Clark put tax on the agenda at her recent conference. The reality is that neither she nor Dr Cullen actually believes in them."

Mr English says National has been a long term advocate of phased tax cuts as an incentive for enterprise and productivity growth. Meanwhile, Dr Cullen cancelled the 'chewing gum' tax cuts he promised in an election year because New Zealanders weren't grateful enough.

"By Dr Cullen's own calculations, someone on the average wage who has had pay increases of around $10,000 since he came to power, has been allowed to keep only $1,700 of it, once taxation and inflation is taken into account.

"On Dr Cullen's best-case-scenario numbers, the total dividend to Joanna Average is just $1,700 in real terms.

"Little wonder, on those figures, that according to Dr Cullen, New Zealanders have 'zero' chance of closing the income gap with Australians."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Charlotte Graham: Empowering Communities To Act In A Disaster

The year of record-breaking natural disasters means that in the US, as in New Zealand, there’s a conversation happening about how best to run the emergency management sector and what philosophies best engage and protect communities in the event of a crisis.

How much of the responsibility for a community’s safety in a natural disaster is the Government’s, and how much can be left up to the community themselves? And how do we ensure none of our most vulnerable residents are left behind? More>>


CPAG Report: The Further Fraying Of The Welfare Safety Net

New Zealand’s welfare system has undergone a major transformation during the past three decades. This process has seriously thwarted the original intent of the system, which was to provide a decent standard of living for all New Zealanders in times of need... More>>


Signage, Rumble Strips, Barriers: Boost For State Highway Road Safety

Boost for road safety this summer Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter today announced a short term boost in road safety funding this summer and signalled a renewed focus from the Government on introducing safer speed limits. More>>


Risks & Adaptation: Cheaper To Cut Emissions Than Deal With Climate Change

The cost of climate change to New Zealand is still unknown, but a group of experts tasked with plugging the country's information gaps says it will likely be significant and it would be cheaper to cut greenhouse emissions than simply adapting to those changes. More>>


BPS HYEFU WYSIWYG: Labour's Budget Plans, Families Package

“Today we are announcing the full details of the Government’s Families Package. This is paid for by rejecting National’s tax cuts and instead targeting spending at those who need it most. It will lift 88,000 children out of poverty by 2021." More>>





Featured InfoPages