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Peters: Porirua Public Meeting

Rt Hon Winston Peters

New Zealand First Leader
9 September 2014

Porirua Public Meeting
Tuesday 9 September, 1.30pm

Porirua Club, Lodge Place, Porirua

Forming Coalitions

Capital Gains Tax

Tax Cuts and Debt

In this campaign there are political parties lining up before the election stating their preferred choice of coalition partner.

In the case of some parties their preferred choice is based on the fact that they owe their parliamentary existence to another party and have done a deal on that basis, or tried to.

In the case of two parties they have campaigned on the basis of being an alternative government but they are surely coming to the conclusion now that the political mathematics simply does not add up.

The National Party’s brand in this election is one of economic cynicism. It begs the question – how many New Zealanders really feel positive about voting for a National government that has by Mr English’s own admission no new ideas, just because they don’t like the alternative that has for over two and a half years been presented to them.

Take the debate that flaired up on the most flimsy of pretences a week ago on the issue of capital gains tax.

Who would have thought during that debate that we already have capital gains tax in this country. So the question becomes whether the existing capital gains tax should be extended. Yesterday the Institute of Economic Research put out a paper on Labour’s capital gains tax proposal saying it would only bring in $590 million 15 years from now.

Labour say it will bring in $3.7 billion.

What’s curious about the NZEIR Federated Farmers paper is that if they are correct what’s all the screaming about?

Of course they are not correct and Labour’s figures are about right and it was the anxiety of that being the case which caused the other side economic palpitations in the first place.

New Zealand First’s stance is very clear, we are not for an extension to the present capital gains tax because

First, a capital gains tax without compensation where there are capital losses is demonstrably unfair.

Second, there are better ways to obtain a shift from the present consumption policies to policies based on production and exporting. A number of countries abroad who our exporters face every day in unfair competition have such incentives for their exporters. We don’t. And that is why New Zealand First has a new export tax policy of 20 per cent that will send very clear signals to both New Zealand and offshore investors, of the wisdom of investing in New Zealand for production and export purposes.

In addition to being a serious wealth creation measure this would seriously enhance employment in our country which is the second objective that would determine whether offshore money was genuine foreign investment or merely a corporate raid with no new production, no new wealth or no new jobs.

It is surely clear from yesterday’s announcement of tax cuts in April 2017 by the Prime Minister that the National Party is having a private laugh at the public’s expense.

When have you ever heard a party campaigning on ‘virtual tax cuts’ for the election beyond this one.

This of course follows the Finance Minister saying there is no room for it, in countless prior interviews.

Forming Coalitions

A majority of New Zealanders do not believe that New Zealand is doing well enough economically.

A majority of new Zealanders are growing alarmed at the level of our governmental and national debt.

According to the New Zealand Herald editorial today John Key envisages setting aside $500m per budget for tax reduction for the further repayment of debt.

Whilst simplistic, on that basis, it will take 140 years to pay off our governmental debt which is heading towards $69-$70 billion, seven times higher than when National came to power. Of course projected surpluses into the future alter that equation. However, the very concept of a surplus given the fall in dairy and log prices is vanishing like a mirage in the desert. Add to that the further $5 billion for the Christchurch Rebuild, then one could be forgiven for thinking that the Treasury and the national party are talking nonsense.

Exporting under National has gone from 33% to now 29% and is projected to fall to 26%.

So where is the surplus going to come from unless there is a change in direction towards real export growth and savings?

A majority of New Zealanders are concerned about foreign ownership of housing and land.

A majority of new Zealanders are concerned about the level of immigration heading to near record levels of net 41,000.

A majority of New Zealanders are seriously concerned about poverty and the level of unemployment and under employment.

A major employer has gone down for every week of this campaign.

Having regard to what has just been said, anyone going into coalition negotiations without a total commitment to address the public concerns is not there to negotiate for the people but for their own political preferment and office.

If one has regard to public concerns on issues just stated then coalition negotiations become a critical event. That being the case how could one possibly make a preferred choice now unless they do not intend to defend the people’s interests in these negotiations.

New Zealand First does not intend to go into these negotiations and sell the people’s interests out, which makes our position unique in the campaign.


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