30 May 2013

English confirms national debt set to rise

8:17 pm on 30 May 2013

The Finance Minister has confirmed national debt is expected to rise by $60 billion over the next five years.

Bill English.

Bill English. Photo: NATIONAL PARTY

But Bill English rejects criticism from the Green Party that poor economic management is responsible for the increase in debt.

During Parliament's Question Time on Thursday, Green Party co-leader Russel Norman asked Mr English about the forecast rise in the current account deficit - the difference between what New Zealand country earns and spends overseas.

Mr English said current account deficits over the next five years would total about $60 billion.

Dr Norman wanted to know why Mr English now never spoke about rebalancing the economy.

Mr English replied that the Government's commitment to shifting the economy's focus from property, borrowing and spending to saving and exporting was as strong as ever.