Election policy comparison - tax: What the major political parties will do for you

Interested in what the New Zealand political parties have in store with tax?

Here are the main policies on how the parties would address taxation issues in New Zealand:

"People promise everything and everything in desperation to get political power," the NZ First leader said.
Source: 1 NEWS

New Zealand First:

  • Drop company tax to 24 per cent
  • Reduce GST on food
  • Remove GST from rates on residential properties
Metiria Turei resigned yesterday shortly before a Newshub-Reid Research poll showed a collapse in Greens support.
Source: 1 NEWS

  • Increase existing border charges for International Visitors by $20
  • Make the $220 per week Parental Tax Credit available to all families exempt from paid parental leave
  • Charge for commercial use of water and introduce a capital gains tax (excluding family homes)
The ACT Party leader says some people should have their rent, food and power bills paid straight to the likes of landlords and food providers.
Source: 1 NEWS

  • Drop all four tax rates, with the top two tax rates down to 25 per cent
  • Cut the company tax rate by abolishing corporate welfare
  • Scrap the 'charitable purpose' tax loophole
The Opportunities Party leader said putting a new Labour leader in place does not constitute sound policy, and that his remark was not a personal attack.
Source: 1 NEWS


  • Slash the tax rates on salaries and wages and ask owners of assets to pay more
  • Introduce a charge for commercial water use
Marama Fox and Te Ururoa Flavell at the campaign launch. Source: 1 NEWS

Maori Party: 
  • Remove GST from fresh vegetables, fruit and milk
  • Introduce a levy for international tourists which would go toward infrastructure
The National Party Leader said he always planned to make the promise to lift 100,000 kids out of poverty. Source: 1 NEWS

  • Increase the two lowest tax thresholds - reducing tax on the first $52,000 and under earned
  • Increase the Accommodation Supplement rates while lifting the Family Tax Credit
Students turned out to see the Labour leader speak at Auckland University.
Jacinda Ardern. Source: 1 NEWS

  • Implement a water-tax on commercial users
  • Introduce a $25 tourism levy for international visitors
  • Allow Auckland Council to cost a regional fuel tax
  • Reverse the 2018 tax cuts, scrap secondary tax and tax property speculators who sell houses within five years
Green Party leader James Shaw, NZ First leader Winston Peters, TOP leader Gareth Morgan, Labour leader Jacinda Ardern, National leader Bill English, ACT leader David Seymour, Maori Party leaders Te Ururoa Flavell and Marama Fox.
Green Party leader James Shaw, NZ First leader Winston Peters, TOP leader Gareth Morgan, Labour leader Jacinda Ardern, National leader Bill English, ACT leader David Seymour, Maori Party leaders Te Ururoa Flavell and Marama Fox. Source: Getty

Interested in education and immigration policies? 

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Here are just a few policies the parties have on how they would structure the economy in New Zealand. Source: 1 NEWS

'It is soul destroying' – Farmer left out of pocket after buying 'starved' calves over the internet

It was just after New Year three years ago when Jane Donald and her husband Mark Johnson went up to the gate to get their late Christmas present. 

They had spent $12,900 on 30 calves. They purchased them on Trade Me and they arrived on a truck. They couldn't believe what they saw.

"Totally disgusted, I could not believe it," says Ms Donald.

"I know you get sick calves and I know it is soul destroying. But these were just the pits." 

According to vet reports, some of the three-month-old calves were starved, listless and weighing not much more than a newborn.

"The worst was about 56 kilos," Ms Donald says. 

Up to 24 of the 30 cows had been ill-treated. Twelve of those could not be saved.

"So they hold a little gun against their head and a little bolt just goes dong, dong. "

The calves were killed by a government animal welfare officer.  They were too starved to save.

"It was awful, seeing 12 calves lying dead in a heap," says Ms Donald.

The woman who sold the starving calves is Lucy Richmond, through her company Snitz and Gigglez Farming Limited.

After she refused to refund any money, Ms Donald took Ms Richmond and her company to the disputes tribunal where Richmond was ordered to pay $9600.

Ms Donald says the Disputes Tribunal then got a letter from Ms Richmond saying Snitz and Gigglez Farming Limited had ceased trading.

Ms Richmond says Ms Donald has never ever pursued her for any money. She also denies mistreating the calves, despite pleading guilty to two charges of mistreating animals last year.

Her company Snitz and Gigglez Farming Limited, now operating under a new name Ma Belle Contracting, was fined $5000 in the Hastings District Court and ordered to pay Ms Donald $7313.

Ms Richmond still swears the calves were fine when they left her house. She promised to produce documents proving her case, but never did.

She did though pay Ms Donald $1100, which is four months missed reparation payments of $220 a month. Ms Donald was amazed, and surprised.

"That's absolutely awesome. Thank you."

The money will help feed Ms Donald's new calves, which are thriving on some green grass and fresh air.

One vet called the situation "the worst case of production animal nutrition I have been involved with." Source: Fair Go


'It clearly is damaging' - 1 NEWS' Corin Dann on the growing criticism of Labour's uncertain tax plans

Winston Peters' demands that Labour reveal any possible land tax policy before the election has created "damaging" uncertainty around a potential Ardern Government, 1 NEWS political editor Corin Dann says.

The New Zealand First leader has called for Labour to release all its tax policy ahead of the election and not hide behind a tax expert committee which Labour intends to commission.

Read more: 'We've put it all out there' – Jacinda Ardern defiant over Winston Peters' calls to reveal tax plan

Labour says it will not commit to all their tax policy before this committee has properly investigated and reported back.

The NZ First leader says Jacinda Ardern needs to be more upfront about her party's plans. Source: 1 NEWS

"It clearly is damaging, and it's not helpful to have Winston Peters jumping on board, echoing National's criticisms," Dann said. 

"The problem for Labour is not so much the capital gains tax, we saw in our poll 58 per cent support that as long as it's not on the family home.

"But it's the ability of National to raise other possible taxes which Labour's not willing to rule out from that committee, so that's the problem for them.

"But I think there's also a bit of strategy going on here from Winston Peters, he's also positioning himself perhaps with soft Labour voters who are wavering a little bit signaling that he could be some sort of potentially moderating force on a future Labour government. So maybe a bit of strategy at play." 

Mr Peters was of the opinion that because Labour has ruled out a capital gains tax on the family home, they necessarily also knew which taxes they had ruled in.

The Labour leader has repeatedly said she will employ a tax working group to help make policy if elected. Source: 1 NEWS

"Usually people want disclose good things and hide bad things, I just want to know, and I think the tax payer should know, before they vote," Mr Peters said.

Jacinda Arden said Ms Peters has "wrongly implied" Labour has worked through "all of our [tax] expectations and we haven't".

1 NEWS' political editor says it's hard for Jacinda Ardern to defend their current stance. Source: 1 NEWS