Key Points:

Prime Minister John Key has announced the Government will hold a "jobs summit" to look at ideas that will keep New Zealanders employed in 2009.

At a media conference at Auckland's Stamford Plaza hotel this afternoon, Mr Key announced the Prime Ministerial summit on employment in February would be a "do-fest" not a "talk-fest".

Mr Key told reporters the country was in for a "particularly challenging year" as the global economic crisis rolled on.

The summit would take place in Auckland on February 27 and be open to various sectors, from unions, to business and government.

It would be chaired by a yet-to-be-announced "private sector person", who was already at work.

A Herald tally of jobs lost since the general election on November 8 last year today stood at 2250.

Key told media he wanted to see results from the jobs summit.

"I don't want this to be a talk fest, I want it to be a do-fest."

Mr Key also defended the Government's 100-day plan, which has copped criticism in the face of a lengthy summer break by politicians.

The new Government had "hit the ground" apace, and commentators should not underestimate how much was planned in "providing confidence and support in the coming year".

Mr Key said despite pessimism, he remained confident about New Zealand's economic future.

He said the Government books were healthy.

"We've got one of the most stimulatory economic positions of any government taken. We've literally gone from a negative $2 billion position to a positive $7 billion over a two year period," Mr Key said.

He said the Government had also looked at introducing legislation including the 90-day employment probation period and a reform of the Resource Management Act.

The employment summit is one of a raft of policy suggestions Key is expected to table at a special meeting of senior ministers, at the Beehive tomorrow.

Also expected to be discussed are branding of the forthcoming Budget, liquidity issues affecting the economy, infrastructure and corporate tax rates.