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Prime Minister Wrong on Zero Budget

David PARKER 

Finance Spokesperson                        
 
21 May 2012                                                                 

MEDIA STATEMENT  

Prime Minister Wrong on Zero Budget  
 
The Prime Minister is wrong to claim the only alternative to National’s budget choices is more borrowing, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says.

Mr Key said on radio this morning that he had “noticed David Shearer saying, well, zero Budget means zero growth. Well, that may be what the Labour Party think… that the only way to grow an economy is to spend money you don't have via taxpayers but in fact, the way to grow an economy of course, is with a vibrant economy.”

But David Parker says the Prime Minister is playing politics, and his claims are false.

“Labour would have the books back in the black in the same year as National, but we would never make return to surplus the sole measure of economic success.

“The National Government has presided over the worst economic growth in fifty years, and one of the worst performing developed economies outside of Europe.
 
“This week’s zero budget is the result of failed economic management. It’s not a solution to it,” David Parker said.

“Labour’s alternative is not to borrow more. It is to make different choices that will grow the economy faster. For example, if the Government didn’t sell assets, it wouldn’t need to spend $120 million on consultant fees. That money alone would avoid forcing larger classes on our teachers. Selling assets isn’t going to grow the economy. Nor will bigger classes.

“John Key should not be accusing others of spending taxpayers’ money they don’t have, when he himself is refusing to make tough choices.
 
“He should be making the hard decisions, decisions such as introducing pro-growth tax reform to help lead investment into productive areas of the economy and boost research and development, and decisions around the looming spending pressures as our population ages.

“The Government needs to grow a skilled workforce and grow our science and innovation. It needs to support our exporters so we can keep profits here and reduce our reliance on foreign borrowing, and it needs to increase our savings and back pro-growth tax reform,” David Parker said.

ENDS

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