No surprises in the New Zealand Government Budget update

[17 December 2013]

PwC Director Chris Money says, "There were no real surprises in today’s Government release of the Half-Year Economic and Fiscal Update and Budget Policy Statement."
 
PwC’s commentary on the release, also released today, highlights a cautiously optimistic approach by the Government. 
 
“The Government continues to predict a return to surplus in 2014/15. In addition, the economy is forecast to grow by an average of 2.6 percent each year over the next five years and the unemployment rate is expected to fall below six percent in 2014/15 and down to 4.8 percent in 2018. 
 
“However, the Government faces five key challenges leading into Budget 2014 and the ensuing parliamentary term – striking a balance between affordability, demand and supply for housing; getting a sustainable, high-value public service; driving growth in the regions; globally competitive cities; and managing demographic change in a fiscally responsible manner.
 
“Budget 2014 will be pivotal not just to the current Government’s hopes of winning the 2014 election, it will also largely set the scene for the hopes of the Government to win a fourth term in 2017,” Mr Money says.
 
PwC’s full commentary on today’s Half-Year Economic and Fiscal Update and Budget Policy Statement release can be found online at www.pwc.co.nz
 
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