Parliament

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

 

Govt to spend $8.5b on rebuilding Christchurch

SPEECH (ATTACHED) AND PR (BELOW) EMBARGOED UNTIL 12.45PM


Hon Bill English
Minister of Finance


12 April 2011
Embargoed until 12.45pm Media Statement

Govt to spend $8.5b on rebuilding Christchurch

The Government will spend about $8.5 billion over the next few years to help the rebuilding of Christchurch, Finance Minister Bill English said today.

“The earthquakes do not fundamentally change our economic situation or the Government’s programme,” he said in a speech to the Wellington Employers’ Chamber of Commerce. “They simply make the task of returning to surplus a little more difficult.”

At this stage, the Treasury estimates the direct cost to the Government of the two earthquakes at about $5.5 billion, which will be fully provided for in the Budget on 19 May.

“About $3 billion of this relates to our share of local government infrastructure, roads, insurance excesses on schools and hospitals, temporary housing and land remediation agreed after the September quake, demolition costs in the CBD, ACC costs and the business support package.

“The remaining $2.5 billion will cover expected costs of decisions we have yet to make – the biggest cost is likely to be remediation of land damage from the February quake. The final cost of land remediation is yet to be determined.

“In addition, the direct cost to EQC of meeting residential property damage of the two quakes will be at least $3 billion, making a total direct cost to Government of around $8.5 billion.”

On the other side of the ledger, the Treasury had previously estimated that the Government’s loss of tax revenue as a result of the earthquakes and lower economic growth could be between $3 billion and $5 billion over the next five years.

“However, the good news is that on current forecasts this loss of tax revenue is likely to be a bit less than $3 billion, though we still await final Budget forecasts,” Mr English says.

He adds the cost of the Government’s share of rebuilding Christchurch needs to be put in context.

“It sounds a lot. But New Zealand’s annual GDP is around $200 billion a year; the Government spends around $70 billion a year; and it has assets of over $220 billion.

“Meeting the Government’s share of the immediate earthquake costs will require a quite substantial front loading of Crown debt in the next year or two. That’s because we need to get the rebuild underway quickly and therefore we need the money immediately.

“The Budget will clearly set out the Government’s plan to return to surplus, so we can start paying off this debt,” Mr English says.

ENDS

Wgtn_speech__12_April.pdf

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Compensating Afghan Civilian Casualties

Reportedly, there have been nine incidents resulting in 17 civilian deaths and injuries (seven of the dead were children) caused by ordnance left behind on what used to be the firing range of our Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Bamiyan province.

Given that the NZ Defence Force has needed to be hauled kicking and screaming into belatedly arranging an adequate clean-up of its old firing range… what would it take before New Zealand offers to pay compensation to the families of those who suffered death and injury from what was left behind on our watch? More>>

 

Children's Day: Commissioner Calls For Govt Commitment

“Three decades on, we are able to celebrate some significant changes for children like the recent launch of a Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy. But we still have a long way to go to prioritise children’s rights.” More>>

ALSO:

Elections: Proposed Electorate Boundaries Released

The Representation Commission is proposing changes to half of New Zealand’s electorates and establishing a new electorate in south Auckland… More>>

ALSO:

"Effectively A Permanent Amnesty": Final Month For Gun Ban Compensation

The firearms buy-back comes to an end a month from today, but the police say the amnesty for returning banned guns will continue into next year and beyond. More>>

ALSO:


SPECIAL GUNS FOR FOREIGN SECURITY:


MORE ARMED POLICE:

Overseas Investment Rules: New National Interest Test

The Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers... More>>

ALSO:

Matter Of Trust: Peters Says NZ First Loans Legal

"Allegations raised this morning by Stuff Limited / Fairfax concern a party matter but I am confident that New Zealand First has operated within electoral laws, now and for the last 27 years." More>>

ALSO:

PGF CONFLICT OF INTEREST:

Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Age Problem, And The Port Hills

Labour has been steadily improving its gender balance to the point where there are now 21 women in its caucus out of 46 MPs in all... Yet Labour has been just as steadily losing the generational battle to the Greens. More>>

ALSO:

Charles & Camilla: Visit Takes Royals From Waitangi To Christchurch

Domestic violence services, conservation and education are all on the list for the royal tour. The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall will spend a week travelling the country from Waitangi to Christchurch. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels