Key Notes: Setting out our plans for Budget 2013
19 April 2013
Setting out our plans for Budget 2013
We're less than a month out from delivering our fifth Budget, on May 16th, and this week I delivered my first pre-Budget speech.
In my speech, I outlined some of our focus areas for Budget 2013.
We remain firmly on track to reach surplus in
2014/15. This is a considerable turnaround in the space
of just a few years.
Because of our strong economic management, we've got our economy back on track, protected New Zealanders from the sharpest edges of the recession, and invested in areas that matter such as our education system, and the health service.
Getting back to surplus is
important, but it's by no means the Government's only goal.
It's part of our wider programme to build a more productive and competitive
Through our six-part Business Growth Agenda, we've set out the actions we're taking to ensure Kiwi businesses can access export markets, innovation, skills, infrastructure, natural resources, and capital markets.
In my speech, I said this year's Budget will contain a package of initiatives which are focused on helping New Zealand sell more of what we produce to the world - we call this our international growth package.
Part of this, is that we will be investing
$158 million over four years in tourism to help boost the
way we market New Zealand to the world.
Growing our tourism industry has real and measurable flow-on effects for the rest of our economy. Tourism employs more than six per cent of our total workforce, and in the year ended March 2012, tourism generated $9.6 billion of revenue.
Next week I am attending New Zealand's premier tourism conference, TRENZ, and on Sunday I plan to announce the details of where this investment will be spent. What I can tell you already is this package of funding will help continue the great work we're already doing to attract more high-value tourists, and grow our target tourist markets.
Last week, I was in China. This was a successful trip, and it underpins why our international connections are important for New Zealand's future.
China's economy is doubling in size every decade. As the population of China and many other Asian countries continues to grow, and they gain in prosperity, they will start looking more and more at places like New Zealand to provide the safe and nutritious food their families need, the top-quality education they want for their children, and as a travel destination.
If we can act now to encourage them to tilt a little bit in our direction, the demand will be huge.
From my diary
Today I'm in
Christchurch, after last night opening the new Christchurch
Airport. I'm marking Anzac Day next Thursday in Wellington
at the dawn service and later on at the national service
being held at the National War Memorial. Later that evening
I'll be attending the Anzac Day Aussie Rules football match
at Westpac Stadium.
www. johnkey. co. nz