Budget 2021 live: All the latest reaction and interviews with the major players

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thu, 20 May 2021, 2:25PM

Budget 2021 live: All the latest reaction and interviews with the major players

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thu, 20 May 2021, 2:25PM

The government has announced its 2021 Budget. Newstalk ZB and NZ Herald is bringing you full Budget coverage as well as analysis, reaction and a look into what it all means for Kiwis.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson, who today announced his fourth budget, had previously warned that this budget would reflect a "balanced approach" with an emphasis on "careful fiscal management".

In the lead up to the big announcement today, the government did not give many hints on what was to come.

Funding for new a child poverty prevention scheme was expected to be announced, given the fact that this has been highlighted as a Budget priority.

Meanwhile, the Government has been much more explicit about its plans to announce funding for Māori housing.

Speaking to reporters earlier this week, Robertson said the Government will announce a "significant" Māori housing package today.

"We do know that Māori homeownership rates are much lower than the rest of the population, so it is an area that we want to put focus on."

The Government announced the bulk of its housing policy in March and said that a separate Māori housing announcement was coming in the Budget.

There has been no shortage of commentary from advocates and punters as to what they want to see in the Budget.

The New Zealand Council for International Development is calling on the Government to increase how much it donates through aid funding.

Greenpeace wants the Government to use the $1 billion in funding – which was reallocated from previously unspent Covid-19 money – to fund greener transport options.

And the Council of Trade Unions wants to see money earmarked to meet the needs of working New Zealanders.

Businesses will also be paying close attention to what the Government announces today.

A poll, conducted by New Zealand accounting and business advisory network Baker Tilly Staples Rodway, shows 71 per cent of respondents believed the Government was not doing enough to support a strong economic rebuild.

Some 68 per cent said the Government was performing poorly on managing the economy in general – there were more than 470 businesses included in the study.