This week’s Budget will show that New Zealand is headed for the deepest recession in a generation and there needs to be a strong plan to guide New Zealand out of this economic hole, Leader of the Opposition Simon Bridges says.

“Westpac has said they’re expecting 10 per cent deficits for the next two years. This would equate to approximately $30 billion in deficit each year.

“They are also forecasting debt to rise to 50 per cent of GDP over the next four years. This would equate to nearly $100 billion in additional Government debt that will need to be repaid. ASB estimate an even sharper rise to 60 per cent of GDP, close to $120 billion more to pay off.

“These figures are eye-watering and work out at more than $50,000 in additional Government debt per household.

“They also highlight the importance of having a clear strategy to guide New Zealand out of this recession and back to economic prosperity.

“National has the right team and a track record of managing New Zealand through times of economic crisis. This Government’s team is lacklustre and has a track record of failing to deliver on their flagship policies.

“There’s no doubt billions of dollars will need to be invested to help get our economy up and running again post-Covid. Our worry is that this Government will turn a $40 billion problem into a $100 billion problem with poorly targeted spending and wayward priorities. And eventually it all needs to be paid back, with interest.

“We all know with Labour that more debt means more tax and the Prime Minister would not rule this out last week.

“We may have flattened the curve as a nation but with 1000 people a day joining the dole queue and employers deciding whether they battle on or give up, it is clear lockdown has gone on too long.

“The Government needs to trust Kiwis to get back to work. We need to get New Zealand working again.”

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