John’s panic-Key response to housing crisis

John Key needs to tell New Zealanders what caused his sudden change of heart that led to the Government’s scrambled and last-minute housing measures, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says.

“The Prime Minister’s sudden rush of blood to his head followed his adamant denials last month that he would be making tax changes for property investors in this week’s Budget.

“And just two weeks ago he told journalists introducing a withholding tax for non-residents selling houses didn’t work in Australia; now the Government’s looking at it.

“It is panic stations at the Beehive. These are rushed and ill-conceived measures that experts have said will have negligible impact.

“Even the Government’s former tax advisor John Shewan says it won’t curb skyrocketing house prices or deter speculators.

“John Key must explain why he believes Inland Revenue can reap $420 million out of additional property tax compliance when the Government’s previous tax clamp down only brought in half as much.

“These are the actions of a bystander Government that has watched the Auckland housing crisis unfold and then done too little too late,” Andrew Little says.