Budget 2018 will be delivered on 17 May, Finance Minister Grant Robertson announced today.
The Budget will build on the priorities outlined in the December 2017 Budget Policy Statement (BPS), which set out the Government's economic strategy.
“Work is already well under-way in bringing together the various Budget bids from Ministers to support the Government's priorities for the next three years,” Grant Robertson says.
Budget 2018 will make progress on a wide range of priorities, including:
• Building quality public services for all New Zealanders and improving access to core services, such as health and education.
• Taking action on child poverty and homelessness.
• Supporting families to get ahead and sharing the wealth generated by our economy with a wide range of New Zealanders.
• Sustainable economic development and supporting the regions.
• Managing our natural resources and taking action against environmental challenges, such as climate change.
“It became clear during the last years of the previous Government that New Zealand's social and infrastructure deficits had widened to such an extent that inequality was growing and not all New Zealanders were sharing in the benefits of economic growth,” Grant Robertson says.
“The Labour-New Zealand First Coalition Government, with support from the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand, has set out to fix that with our wide-ranging, three-year policy platform.
“The BPS outlined that Budget 2018 will have an operating allowance of $2.6 billion per annum, which is larger than the previous Government's operating allowance of $1.7 billion for new operating spending at Budget 2018.
“Meanwhile, the capital allowance at Budget 2018 will be $3.4 billion. Again, this is larger than the previous Government's capital allowance – $2.0 billion – for desperately needed funding for public infrastructure such as hospitals, schools and public transport in Budget 2018.
“While making these investments, we will remain responsible fiscal managers, with the Government's Budget Responsibility Rules ensuring net debt falls to 20 per cent of GDP within five years of taking office, expenditure is controlled, and surpluses are delivered across the economic cycle.
“Budget 2018 will be a turning point for New Zealand, with policies designed to help close the social and infrastructure deficits which emerged in recent years. The new Government will make sure it properly funds essential public services like health and education, while boosting regional economic development, skills training, and putting the settings in place for New Zealand's economy to transition to being more productive, sustainable and inclusive,” Grant Robertson says.