Labour plans to spend $12 bln extra on health and education

Labour has released its fiscal plan promising an extra $12 billion for health and education. Photo: Lynn Grieveson

Labour has announced it would be able to spend an extra $12 billion on health and education over the next four years while also running budget surpluses and reducing net debt to under 20 percent of GDP by 2020/21.

“Under Labour’s Fiscal Plan we will deliver big investments in the services we all need and care about, invest in our long term future and meet the expectation from New Zealanders that we will do so in a prudent and effective way," Labour Leader Andrew Little said in releasing Labour's 17 page fiscal plan, which was vetted by economic consultancy BERL.

Labour has already announced plans for $5 billion of spending on family incomes, a baby bonus and a winter energy payment, and to invest $6.2 billion in contributions to the New Zealand Superannuation Fund over the next four years.

“This will be achieved because we have different priorities than National. We are committed to rejecting National’s election year tax cuts that will hand $400 million to the top 10 per cent of income earners," he said.

“This is a credible plan which has been vetted by economists BERL. We can continue to run surpluses and pay down debt because, unlike National, we do not believe a tax cut can be justified at this time."

Little and Finance Spokesman Grant Robertson are due to formally release the policy and answer questions at an event in Wellington later this morning. We will update with more details after that.