Budget 2011: English says NZ Budget will show ‘very large deficit” including quake costs
May 10 (BusinessDesk) – Finance Minister Bill English says the Budget next week will confirm a ‘very large deficit’ including the immediate costs of rebuilding Christchurch after its two earthquakes.
“It’s essential that the Government gets its own finances in order as quickly as possible, so it can join households and businesses in lifting national savings and reducing New Zealand’s vulnerability to foreign lenders,” English said in a statement after the release of the Treasury’s financial statements for the first nine months of the year.
The Budget “will also confirm significant improvements in the fiscal position over the next few years, before we return to surplus and start repaying debt,” he said. “To achieve that, the Government has completed a careful and balanced review of its spending priorities, which we will outline in the Budget.”
The operating deficit before gains and losses was $10.2 billion for the nine months ended March 31. That included the Earthquake Commission’s $1.5 billion estimated share of the February quake costs but excluded the financial support package for policyholders of insurer AMI.
Next week’s Budget “will set a credible path back to budget surplus,” English said.