Budget 2022 sets out the building blocks of the government’s economic vision – towards a “new normal” in a post-pandemic Aotearoa New Zealand. The NZCTU endorses the Minister of Finance’s vision of a high-wage, low-carbon economy that provides economic security in good times and bad.
Budget 2022 provides a $350 cash payment for “cost-of-living relief”, which will go to about 2.1 million New Zealanders. The Budget also makes significant new investments in health, education, and climate change. It provides funding for the New Zealand Income Insurance Scheme, which the CTU has been heavily involved in designing, as well as funding for the development of Industry Transformation Plans, an Innovation Programme for tourism, and further spending to deliver on the recommendations of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group.
The government has tackled important issues at this Budget. But many challenges remain. How do we move towards that low emissions economy to achieve both high wages and economic security? Who’s going to pay for it? How will they pay for it? And what are the industry, jobs, and employment consequences of that change?