The Government needs to urgently recognise soaring inflation as the biggest medium-term threat to the New Zealand economy and halt its wasteful spending, says National’s Finance spokesperson Michael Woodhouse.
Today, StatsNZ has confirmed what Kiwis all across New Zealand already know – the cost of living is rising fast under the Labour Government.
In the past 12 months, the cost of living has increased by almost 5 per cent, meaning prices are now rising faster than they have at any time in the past 10 years.
Grant Robertson has increased the size of government spending by more than 40 per cent in just four years. It is no surprise New Zealanders are now seeing costs increase all throughout the economy.
Labour’s big spending is hurting the very people Labour claims to represent. The cost of renting a house has now increased 7.8% since just September last year, the biggest increase since records began.
Prices of fresh fruit and vegetables have increased 9.3 per cent in the past 12 months.
The increase in prices in just the last three months is the highest three-monthly increase since the 1980s, excluding the one-off increase in GST in 2010.
The next big cost increase is unfortunately likely to now be mortgage costs as the Reserve Bank is forced to painfully increase interest rates as Kiwis and businesses try to recover from the current Covid outbreak.
Grant Robertson needs to hit pause on any and all of his so-called Covid stimulus spending that is not fully committed. It makes no sense for the Government to be spraying cash at pet projects like the Green School when the biggest problems now facing the economy are inflation, labour shortages and Covid closures.
The Covid Fund needs to be used to support businesses impacted by lockdowns and to ramp up the health response to Covid, not as Grant Robertson’s personal slush fund.
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