Finance Minister Grant Robertson is denying that the Government was pressured by the Reserve Bank into borrowing more money to spend up large on new infrastructure projects.

The central bank and its Governor, Adrian Orr, have been calling for the Government to loosen its purse strings for much of this year.

Robertson also refused to provide much, if any, detail on the Government's spending pipeline plans other than telling reporters to prepare for something "significant".

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"Significance is in the eye of the beholder," he said, when pressed this afternoon.

"I'm saying it's a significant package and I wouldn't be saying that if we weren't planning on doing some really important projects."

National Leader Simon Bridges was critical of Robertson's announcement, saying there was no need for the Government to borrow more.

"Its pockets are bulging from the sweat of hard-working Kiwis and it's wasting billions on the likes of fees-free and Shane Jones, he tweeted.

"As for infrastructure, you can't drive on an announcement. What have they been doing for the last two years?"

Earlier today, Robertson said now was the perfect time for the Government to borrow more money to spend up large on infrastructure projects.

"We have the lowest borrowing costs in New Zealand's history, so it's time to invest."

But he wouldn't elaborate on how much is being spent, and what it would be spent on.


"I thought it would be important today to send that signal," he told reporters.

"I absolutely respect the fact that people have been asking about this [more spending] for some time; we priorities making those investments in hospitals and schools in our first two budgets."

He said he didn't feel under pressure at all from those who have been calling on the Government to spend more.

Orr had been hinting that the Government needed to spend more money to stimulate the economy.

But Speaking to Q&A in August, he put it plainly: "We really need to see the Government spending."

Speaking to Q&A in August, RBNZ Governor Adrian Orr put it plainly:
Speaking to Q&A in August, RBNZ Governor Adrian Orr put it plainly: "We really need to see the Government spending." Photo / Mark Mitchell

Robertson acknowledged this, but said Orr's calls were not what spurred him into action.

"I have said for a very long time that fiscal and monetary policy need to be friends."

Robertson said he had not spoken to Orr about this decision.

He also promised that the Government would: "continue to be fiscally careful and fiscally disciplined.

"But we have made the decision that this is the priority to do this investment now."

Details, such as the size of the spending package, what the money would be spent on and how it would affect the Government's debt track, would all be revealed at the Half Yearly Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFC) on December 11.