Finance Minister Grant Robertson says although our economy is doing better than expected, the resurgence of Covid-19 overseas means we may still be in for some challenges yet.
Speaking to Newstalk ZB's Mike Hosking this morning, the country's new Deputy Prime Minister was asked directly what the state of New Zealand's economy is.
"Better than expected, would be the way that I phrase it," Robertson said.
"Obviously when we go back to Budget, in May, there were some pretty dire predictions around particularly unemployment and where that was heading - and what kind of activity we'd seen in the economy.
"We've rebounded back quite a bit better than that."
Treasury is due to release its half-yearly update next month and he hoped the updated numbers would reflect a better position.
He acknowledged the ongoing issues of Covid-19 overseas and how the resurgence of the virus would inevitably have an effect on New Zealand's economy also.
"Clearly, the resurgence of Covid in Europe, the restrictions and the lockdowns we're seeing there are going with where the forecasts were.
"Obviously that means the medium and long-term outlook for the New Zealand economy has still got plenty of challenges in it."
Referring to the projection from some New Zealand banks that things would be back to normal by 2022, Robertson acknowledged that it was still a long way away and Covid-19 is still something the world is dealing with.
"Overall, what I'd say is while we're better than we thought we'd be and the domestic economy is looking strong, we are still somewhere need the middle, probably, of the effect of Covid-19 and the economy.
"And so everybody's going to be both cautious but also looking to do everything they can to keep the economy ticking over."
Yesterday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said she would be asking the Ministry of Social Development to make do an audit on companies that had taken the wage subsidy offer over the past few months.
That was on the back of companies such as Fulton Hogan, which took up the offer of a wage subsidy then went on to make a huge profit.
"There is a moral question here," Ardern said.
The Ōtorohanga College hostel and the Kāwhia Hotel closed yesterday after a positive Covid-19 case potentially exposed members of the community on a flight.
The small towns of Ōtorohanga and Kāwhia were now on high alert after learning about the flight.
Director general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said the casual contact was on the same flight as an infected Defence Force staffer and went to a meeting in Kāwhia.
They had been feeling unwell. But his test results came back negative yesterday afternoon.
On Friday, health officials confirmed a Defence Force worker from the Jet Park quarantine facility in Auckland had tested positive for the virus.
A second worker tested positive after meeting with them on Wednesday. That person caught a flight from Auckland to Wellington the next evening.
The person was in Auckland Airport's Domestic terminal from 5.30–7.45pm on the Thursday evening before flying to Wellington.
Other locations visited were:
• Avis Car Rental, Auckland Airport: 5–5.15pm, Nov 5
• Orleans Chicken & Waffles, Auckland Airport: 5.30–7pm, Nov 5
• The Gypsy Moth, Auckland Airport: 7–7.15pm, Nov 5
• Hudsons, Auckland Airport: 7–7.15pm, Nov 5
• Little Penang, The Terrace, Wellington: 1.15–3.45pm, Nov 6.
Anyone who visited these businesses during the relevant timeframes is being considered a Covid-19 "casual contact" with a low risk of exposure, the Ministry of Health says.