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Our Priorities

As we continue to face the challenges COVID has thrown our way, our Government is focused on securing our recovery.

We’re putting in place policies that will ensure we can continue to grow our economy while tackling long term issues like child poverty, housing and climate change, so that together, we can emerge from the pandemic stronger than ever.

COVID-19

Keeping New Zealanders safe from COVID-19

Together, we stayed home and saved lives, and thanks to the hard work of the team of five million, we’ve kept COVID at bay. As we move into the next phase of our response, our priority remains keeping New Zealanders safe from COVID-19.

Our key COVID response systems, including our managed isolation and quarantine facilities, will continue to play an important role, while at the same time we ramp up our vaccination programme to protect all New Zealanders. We’re guaranteeing free COVID-19 vaccines for everyone in New Zealand, and our roll out is well underway.

We’re also starting to safely reconnect New Zealanders with the world, opening up quarantine travel bubbles to reunite families and support businesses, trade and export.

 

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Economic recovery

Securing our economic recovery

Thanks to our hard and early response to COVID-19, we’re now in a much stronger position than many other countries. However, the pandemic continues to be the biggest threat facing New Zealand - and so now is the time to secure our recovery.

To weather the uncertainty in front of us, our Government will continue to manage the economy responsibly, creating jobs and keeping debt down. But we’re doing this in a way that ensures that as we grow our economy, we don’t leave anyone behind.

Through our recovery plan, we’re carefully targeting investment so we can turn around decades-old problems like child poverty and inequality, continue to tackle the housing crisis and lay the foundations for lasting action on climate change, while also driving economic growth.

 

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Child poverty

Lifting children out of poverty

Our Government was elected to turn around New Zealand’s record on child poverty. It’s a complex issue that will take time to fix, but we’ve made a good start. Already, policies like our Families Package, minimum wage increases, and free lunches in schools have lifted more than 40,000 children out of poverty, and the initiatives outlined in Budget 2021 are expected to help thousands more.

However, we know there’s more to do. We’re committed to continuing our progress on child poverty and inequality, so that we can make New Zealand the best place in the world to be a child.

 

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Housing

Tackling the housing crisis

New Zealand’s housing crisis has been decades in the making, and there’s no silver bullet or quick fix – but we’re making progress.

For example, we’re building a record number of public and transitional houses, with more than 18,000 places fully funded. We’re rolling out a package of measures to get more Kiwis into homes and tip the balance towards first home buyers. This includes extending the bright-line test and closing a tax loophole that benefits property speculators, lifting the income caps on First Home Loans and First Home Grants, and speeding up the scale and pace of house building through our $3.8 billion Housing Acceleration Fund.

There’s no single answer for fixing the housing crisis, but together, the measures we’ve put in place will make a real difference.

 

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Climate change

Meeting the climate change challenge

Climate change is one of the biggest challenges of our time, and over the past three years, we’ve made tackling climate change a priority. We’ve passed the landmark Zero Carbon Act, banned new offshore oil and gas exploration, established the Climate Change Commission, worked with farmers on a world-leading agreement to reduce agricultural emissions, and more, to help us meet our climate goals.

Now, we’re taking the next steps, laying the foundations for lasting action, while creating jobs and supporting our recovery. We’re supporting schools, hospitals and businesses to make the switch to cleaner energy, working towards 100% renewable electricity by 2030, and investing in low carbon transport as we move forward with our plan for New Zealand to be carbon neutral by 2050.

 

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Māori

Working in partnership with Māori

We’re committed to improving the intergenerational wellbeing of our whānau by working in close partnerships with Māori. Together, we’ve made changes to support our communities, including establishing the Office for Māori Crown Relations – Te Arawhiti, supporting more rangatahi into work and training, and unlocking the potential of whenua Māori.

We’re continuing this mahi as we continue with our recovery, tackling inequality through initiatives like the Māori Health Authority, partnering with iwi to accelerate housing developments and more support for Māori medium education.

 

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