Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said “mischief is being done” on taxes and her party’s policies have not changed.
National and ACT both attacked Ardern on Monday after she did not concretely rule out campaigning on a wealth tax in the upcoming election.
Ardern reiterated at his post-cabinet press conference that Labor tax policy had not changed for this term and that there was no wealth tax on the table – indeed, she said that all tax policy has already been implemented.
“[We have] “no intention to introduce a wealth tax here in this mandate and we are no longer working on it.”
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She went on to say that the Labor Party was not yet working on its 2023 election policy either.
“We have no policies to report. There is no electoral politics that I propose for debate. My statements and positions have not changed. End of the story.”
Ardern was also asked about her comments during the 2020 campaign, when she said she ‘wouldn’t allow’ a wealth tax to happen while she was prime minister, and said she would supported them.
She did not say whether those comments applied to all possible wealth taxes or just the wealth tax proposed by the Green Party.
National finance spokeswoman Nicola Willis said Kiwis “cannot trust” Labor on taxes and that Ardern is “leaving the door wide open” for more taxes.
“The writing is on the wall. [Revenue Minister] David Parker collects wealth data and talks about wealth taxes,” Willis said.
Neither the National nor Labor have revealed their full tax policies for the 2023 election.
Parker has given Inland Revenue more power to know how much New Zealand’s wealthiest people actually pay in taxes.
He is also developing a bill that would require officials to periodically report on how the tax system was performing against a set of principles, including fairness and feasibility.
Parker reiterated during his speech that he was not introducing any new taxes, however.