Social Credit has chosen its party's leader, businessman Chris Leitch as its candidate for the Whangārei electorate at September's general election.

Leitch was the party's Whangārei candidate in the 2014 and 2017 elections.

''It is now widely acknowledged that the economic ideas of the Social Credit Party have become closer to the mainstream as a result of the response to the coronavirus pandemic," he said.

"Previous taboos on economic management have been swept away, with the use of the Reserve Bank to support the economy now accepted. It is creating $60 billion for its quantitative easing programme – something that most people thought was not possible."


Leitch said that puts Social Credit's just released $20 billion economic policy programme for the election into perspective.

"It is widely accepted that as the country moves out of the Covid-19 period, a new economic direction is required to support thousands of unemployed, rebuild business, lift people on low incomes out of poverty, address inadequate housing, develop secondary industry and more self sufficiency, move primary producers towards regenerative farming, and protect and enhance the environment," he said.

"That programme would include Northland in a major way. Northland had been neglected by successive governments because they saw the region as three safe seats."

Leitch said this left Northland with the worst roads in the country, the highest unemployment, the highest crime rate, and a regional economy that would collapse if it wasn't for the money earned by drug dealers.

"The last time any government did anything significant to benefit the region was when it looked like National would lose the Northland seat in a byelection. That saw a flurry of activity with money being poured in for roading projects," he said.

The key features of the $20 billion programme are: a maximum payment of $20 for all GP and dentist visits; no tax on the first $20,000 of income, and only 20 per cent tax on the next $20,000; no fares on all urban public transport; a Child Dividend of $30 per week for all children under 18; a guaranteed minimum income for all low income earners.

It also includes a rent-to-own public housing programme; grants for relocation to lower cost parts of the country; $4.6 billion for environmental, pest free, and energy initiatives.