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Government announce plan to fast-track infrastructure package


The Government is fast-tracking an infrastructure package, which the Finance Minister described as "significant" and says will have a direct impact on growth and will create jobs. 

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Labour supporters were told to prepare to do battle at next year’s election. Source: 1 NEWS

Without releasing any other details, Grant Robertson said the specific projects were still being finalised, but it would be spread across the country. 

"Cabinet has agreed to a significant boost to infrastructure investment," he said from from the Labour Party conference in Whanganui. 

"I have directed the Treasury to help bring together a package of projects that can be brought into the Government’s short and medium term plan of investments."

The announcement signals additional borrowing, with Mr Robertson saying it was now "time to invest".

Minster of Finance, Grant Robertson, speaking at the Labour Party conference. Source: 1 NEWS

He said it comes as interest rates sit at 1.3 per cent for 10 years.  

Mr Robertson hinted that it would provide certainty to the construction industry about upcoming transport projects from 18 months' time. 

"It makes sense to take advantage of this low debt and record low interest rates to make investments now to benefit the generations to come."

The details are set to be announced on December 11. 

Budget 2019 saw a 10-year School Property Programme announced, in addition to the first wave of new school buildings, with $913.3 million set aside "to better plan" for school growth over the next decade. 

It also allocated another $850m for 2020/21 for capital funding for hospitals and multi-year funding into KiwiRail and Auckland's City Rail Link.