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NZ Green Party Promises New Top Tax Rate In Election Bid

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

New Zealand's Green Party has announced that it would raise the country's top tax rate if it wins this year's election.

The party said that it would be able to generate NZD1bn in additional revenue by creating a new top tax rate of 40 percent for those earning above NZD140,000 (USD118,715), along with a 40 percent tax rate for trusts, and measures to tackle tax avoidance.

The additional revenue would be used to tackle child poverty, according to the party's announcement. In particular the reform would fund:

  • A new Children's Credit that will give an extra NZD60 a week to families, at a cost of NZD400m a year;
  • A non-discriminatory Parental Tax Credit of NZD220 a week in the first weeks of life for the poorest children, costing NZD29.4m a year; and
  • A NZD500m per year investment in children's health and education to reduce the harm caused by poverty.

Metiria Turei, the party's co-leader, said that the new top tax rate would only affect three percent of taxpayers. She said that New Zealand would still have one of the lowest top tax rates among Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries if the rate is raised to 40 percent.

New Zealand will hold its election in September this year. In the last (2011) election, the Greens received 11 percent of the vote, giving them 14 seats in Parliament.