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


IRD error unacceptable, but uncertainty remains

Hon Dr Michael Cullen
Minister of Finance

18 March 2008 Media Statement
Embargoed until 11:30am
IRD error unacceptable, but uncertainty remains

The discovery of a serious error made by Inland Revenue in January’s Crown Accounts will not alter the government’s commitment to responsible fiscal management in a time of considerable economic uncertainty, Finance Minister Michael Cullen said today.

Inland Revenue has announced that Crown Accounts released earlier this month incorrectly reported a headline operating deficit. An error meant that January tax revenue was under-reported by approximately $600 million.

“Inland Revenue’s error was serious and unacceptable,” Dr Cullen said. “The news of a tax shortfall in January was a surprise to the government, but also caused unnecessary confusion in the business community.

“While it appears the error was a human one, Inland Revenue and the Treasury are investigating the cause of this mistake and will report back to Revenue Minister Peter Dunne and myself.

“Despite the upward revision in the Crown Accounts, today’s announcement means very little for the government’s overall focus on responsible economic management. These are uncertain times for the New Zealand economy, and households are feeling the impact of a global rise in food and energy costs at a time when interest rates remain high.

“Many farmers are coping with drought while exporters will take no comfort from the news out of the United States this week which has led to further weakening of the US Dollar. New Zealand cannot expect to be immune from a global economic slowdown. But New Zealanders can expect the Labour-led government to take our challenges seriously.

“The decisions we are making around May’s Budget will focus on responsible fiscal management and steps to take our economy forward towards even greater prosperity. Our eight years of prudent fiscal policy means we can weather the current economic situation with greater ease than would have otherwise been the case.

“This will not be a government, for example, that will have to cut the rate of New Zealand Superannuation in a time of uncertainty, as Bill English did on 1 April 1999.”


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Another Leader Exiting: Statement From Peter Dunne

I have concluded, based on recent polling, and other soundings I have been taking over the last few weeks, that, the volatility and uncertainty notwithstanding, there is now a mood amongst Ōhāriu voters for a change of MP, which is unlikely to alter...

“I have therefore decided that it is time for me to stand aside, so the people of Ōhāriu can elect a new electorate MP. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>


Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>


Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>


Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election