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Govt stands by Chch as rebuild cost estimate rises

Rt Hon John Key

Prime Minister

28 April 2013       

Media Statement

Govt stands by Chch as rebuild cost estimate rises

The National-led Government is standing behind Christchurch as the estimated cost of the rebuild is revised upwards, says Prime Minister John Key.
 
Mr Key spoke today to the National Party Mainland Region conference in Hanmer Springs, and released new figures showing the extent of the challenge in rebuilding the earthquake-damaged city.
 
“This is the largest and most complex, single economic project in New Zealand’s history.  The scale of the rebuild is unprecedented,” says Mr Key. 
 
“That always meant that it would be difficult to get an exact handle on the total estimated cost straight away.
 
“Treasury has revised upwards its estimate of the total capital cost of the rebuild from $30 billion – the number in last December’s half-year fiscal update – to $40 billion. This will be contained in next month’s Budget.
 
“This estimate includes capital costs incurred by entities, such as commercial entities, as well as the Crown.
 
“The Budget will also show that the estimated net fiscal cost of the earthquakes to the Crown will rise from around $13 billion at the half-year fiscal update last December, to around $15 billion.
 
“Despite this, the Budget will still show the Government is on track to a surplus in 2014/15.
 
“The estimate increases are due in many cases to more precise information becoming available about what the actual costs are across a range of areas, from housing and social investment to infrastructure and commercial development.
 
“These estimates will continue to be updated from time to time, but they do not change the Government’s commitment to Christchurch and Canterbury.
 
“We will do what it takes to rebuild our second largest city, and that commitment will be unwavering.”
 
Mr Key noted that considerable progress was being made on the rebuild.
 
He noted that while the rebuild will be largely built by private sector capital, the Government will put money into delivering core public facilities and services.
 
“We want to focus taxpayers’ money in social assets rather than putting that money into competition with private sector players.

“All this demonstrates our commitment to the people of Christchurch, and Canterbury,” says Mr Key.

ENDS

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