The Prime Minister’s flippant response to concerns New Zealand is a tax haven continues to damage our international reputation with the European Union now investigating foreign trust laws here, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.
“John Key can insist all he likes that we are not a tax haven but the prominent part New Zealand played in the Panama Papers has left a lasting impression on other countries including the EU.
The Government continues to mislead the public about foreign speculators with its selective data underestimating their impact on the New Zealand housing market by up to 75 per cent, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.
“National has removed the ability for corporations and trusts to be identified as foreign so has skewed the data from the start. They have also counted foreign students and temporary workers who don’t intend to stay in the country or live in the home they’ve bought as New Zealanders.
Modelling done for the Independent Hearing Panel predicts that only 15 per cent of new homes under Auckland’s Unitary Plan will cost less than $800,000, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.
“The majority of these houses will be out of the reach of most Auckland families. The modelling found* that, of the 247,000 new homes planned within the existing urban area, 85 per cent will cost more than $800,000 and most will cost more than a million dollars.
Paula Bennett’s policy to fund $9 million worth of support services is much-needed help for the homeless but smacks of yet another last minute, short-sighted and piecemeal decision, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.
“Funding services for two years will relieve some immediate issues for families but without a plan to build more affordable and state houses, it’s another ambulance at the bottom of the cliff proposal.
The Government must explain why the panel considering Auckland’s unitary plan removed affordability requirements at the behest of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and Housing NZ, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.
“Labour welcomes the Independent Hearing Panel’s recommendations to substantially free up restrictive controls that are stopping Auckland growing up and out. The pressure is now on Auckland Council to do the right thing, and back the recommendations.
Merchant bankers, overseas companies and property developers will be lining up to buy 364 state houses in Horowhenua during two days of “market sounding” meetings starting tomorrow, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.
“Despite a housing crisis and families being forced to live in cars and garages, National is forging ahead with its ideologically-driven plan to hock off thousands of state houses throughout the country.