Isaac Davison

Isaac Davison is a NZ Herald political reporter.

Key: National will outline conditions for tax cuts

Prime Minister John Key. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Prime Minister John Key. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Prime Minister John Key says National is likely to outline "a broad sense" of the conditions needed for tax cuts before the election, but no specific details.

Speaking to reporters in Blenheim today, he said voters would not be given any details of how much they might save a week under potential tax cuts before polling day.

But they would be told of the conditions that would be required for Government to cut taxes.

"Everyone acknowledges that things are tight. The question here is do we have any room to move at all and that's something we're working on."

He said tax cut programmes required consideration of numerous variables.

"What I would rather be able to do for New Zealanders is say 'Here are the Government's core priorities ... but if we can move on reducing people's taxes, particularly in that lower and middle income end I'd like to be able to do that."

Mr Key has accused Labour of trying to buy the election with its big-spending policies, but claimed that teasing voters with potential tax cuts was a different proposition.

"If we go into this election with a tax cut programme we will be identifying both the conditions that have to be met and the sort of money that is involved."

The Government will also invest $2 million a year over five years to increase Asian language learning in schools.

The $10 million fund was designed to provide more students with opportunities to learn the languages of countries with whom New Zealand had strong trade relationship, Prime Minister John Key said this morning.

He made the announcement in Blenheim, where he was speaking at the New Zealand Winegrowers national conference.

The new funding would focus on increasing the number of schools that offered Mandarin, Korean and Japanese.

Mr Key told an audience of 600 the initiative was evidence of National's commitment to free trade and openness to the world.

He said National was the only party which was not raising barriers to foreign investment and free trade.

Mr Key also defended the secrecy of New Zealand's Trans Pacific Partnership talks, saying that New Zealand would stand to lose if it revealed its bottom lines to the world.

He also warned that Labour appeared likely to oppose the TPP, based on its public comments.

- NZ Herald

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