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

 


PQ3. Economic Programme—Reports


[Sitting date: 23 July 2014. Volume:700;Page:4. Text is subject to correction.]
3. JOHN HAYES (National—Wairarapa) to the Minister of Finance : What recent reports has he received supporting the Government’s economic programme?
Hon BILL ENGLISH (Minister of Finance): Earlier this month the credit rating agency Fitch Ratings confirmed that it had revised New Zealand’s AA credit rating outlook from stable to positive. This indicates the credit rating’s likely direction over the next year or two. Fitch Ratings said that the Government’s fiscal consolidation and track to surplus in 2014-15 are increasing the resilience of New Zealand’s sovereign credit profile, and it noted that the Government has a credible plan to lift fiscal surpluses in the years ahead and to reduce net core Crown debt to 20 percent of GDP by 2020. Fitch Ratings also said that New Zealand’s economic policy framework, business environment, and standards of governance ranked among the world’s strongest from a credit perspective and warranted high-grade sovereign ratings.
John Hayes : In confirming the positive outlook for New Zealand’s credit rating, what did Fitch Ratings say about New Zealand’s current and future economic growth prospects?
Hon BILL ENGLISH : It noted that New Zealand’s macroeconomic record and prospects are supporting its credit rating. It said that real GDP grew by 2.7 percent in 2013 and is expected to increase to 3.8 percent in 2014. This will be supported by, among other factors, reconstruction in Canterbury; dairy prices, which have moderated but are still at elevated levels; and a house-building catch-up. Fitch Ratings noted that although New Zealand’s average GDP growth over the past 5 years, at 1.6 percent, is lower than the median among AA rated countries, it was less volatile and was higher than the 1.2 percent median growth rate among AAA rated countries.
John Hayes : What other factors did Fitch Ratings note in respect of its positive ratings outlook for New Zealand?
Hon BILL ENGLISH : One of the factors Fitch Ratings noted was New Zealand’s historical vulnerability around high net external debt and persistent current account deficits. I am pleased to report that both of these indicators have improved significantly in recent years. For example, the unadjusted current account balance in the March quarter was a surplus of $1.4 billion—the largest dollar surplus ever recorded—and the annual 2.8 percent deficit is well under half the deficits of around 7 percent of GDP in the 3 years to 2008. So our net international liability position has improved. It was 65 percent of GDP in March this year, well down from a recent peak of 85 percent of GDP in early 2009.
John Hayes : And for my last question, what other reports has he received about the state of the New Zealand economy?
Hon BILL ENGLISH : I have seen one report claiming that Government debt is larger as a percentage of GDP than New Zealand had during World War II. This is completely false. Gross Government debt is currently around 35 percent of GDP. At the end of World War II it was around 150 percent of GDP. David Cunliffe has again completely misled New Zealanders

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

Werewolf: The Defence Pretence

Last year, the world began spending more money on weapons again, for the first time since 2011... New Zealand belongs to a region – Asia and Oceania – where military spending rose sharply in 2015, by 5.4 per cent. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Not Crying Foul, Argentina

So a couple of guys found to be criminally liable of environmental pollution in Argentina lodge an application with the Overseas Investment Office… in order to buy some prime New Zealand rural land. Seems that their factory back home had carelessly and/or intentionally discharged toxic waste into the Lujan river. Bummer... More>>

ALSO:

Urban & Rural: $303m To Merge And Modernise New Zealand’s Fire Services

Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne today announced funding of $303 million over five years to combine urban and rural fire services into one organisation from mid-2017. More>>

ALSO:

High Trust Regime: What Did The PM Tell His Lawyer About Foreign Trusts?

The Government stopped the IRD from reviewing New Zealand foreign trusts shortly after the Prime Minister’s lawyer wrote to the Revenue Minister claiming John Key had promised him the regime would not be changed. More>>

ALSO:

Road Crime: Wicked Campers Vans Classified As Objectionable

The definition of publication includes any "thing that has printed or impressed upon it, or otherwise shown upon it, 1 or more (or a combination of 1 or more) images, representations, signs, statements, or words", The Classification Office has previously classified such 'things' as billboards, t-shirts, and even a drink can. This is the first time the Classification Office has classified a vehicle. More>>

ALSO:

'When New' Repairs: Landmark EQC Settlement

The Earthquake Commission has cut a deal with 98 Canterbury homeowners that affirms the government entity's responsibility to repair earthquake-damaged property to a 'when new' state, as well as covering repairs for undamaged parts of a property and clarifying its position on cash settlement calculations. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Kiwirail’s Latest Stint In The Dogbox

The denigration of Kiwirail continues. The latest review (based on a 2014 assessment) of the options facing the company have enabled Kiwirail to be hung out to dry once again as a liability and burden on the taxpayer. More>>

ALSO:

Royal Society Report: Good Opportunities To Act Now On Climate Change

There are many actions New Zealand can and should take now to reduce the threat of climate change and transition to a low-carbon economy, a report released today by the Royal Society of New Zealand finds... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news