It is good news for the New Zealand economy that Moody’s Investors’ Service has affirmed our Aaa rating but we shouldn’t let the Government now waste it, National’s Finance spokesperson Amy Adams says.

“The recent international credit rating agency report praises the strength of an economy built up under nine years of a National Government.

“In Moody’s own words: it notes how New Zealand’s fiscal metrics ‘improved swiftly in the aftermath of the 2008 recession and the 2011 Canterbury earthquake; they continued to improve through the downturn in commodity prices from 2014-2016 and the Kaikoura earthquake in late 2016.’ 

“That New Zealand survived both economic and natural challenges and was still able to emerge stronger is testament to National’s stable hand in Government

“Moody’s also praised National’s debt reduction, pointing out that ‘the central government's gross debt fell to 26.5 per cent of GDP in 2017 from a recent peak at 31.3 per cent in 2012.’

“Economists have already cut their forecasts for Government surpluses in coming years because of the likelihood the Government will need more revenue than it expects to fund its wasteful and largely unquantified spending plans.

“National built up strong economic foundations for New Zealand which are now at risk of being torn down, undoing all the good words Moody’s have today praised.

“The Government’s employment policy will undermine the strength of New Zealand’s labour force and make it less flexible at a time when great change is being demanded of employers in a global market.

“It has already dampened enthusiasm for New Zealand as an export destination, turning away the vast investment appetite of global capital right now.

“It also decided to impose a fuel tax just as global crude prices were rising, hitting Kiwis at the petrol pump and its ban on oil and gas exploration ensures New Zealand will be a net importer of fossil fuels products, with all the cost that implies, for the foreseeable future.

“It is far easier to spend wealth than create it. National wants all New Zealanders to have the opportunity to accumulate wealth.

“Low-quality spending such as we’ve seen from this Government with its working groups, slush funds and massive but unsuccessful student bribe shows how quickly gains can be eroded.”

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