Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has signalled to Government ministers they’ll need to prove any new policies will improve the well-being of New Zealanders "across generations" if they want funding to implement them.
Ms Ardern made the comments to media at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
"GDP (Gross Domestic Product) only tells us so much, it doesn’t tell us about mental well-being, what’s going on with housing people, performance of our education system," she says. "It should be about how well are we actually performing as a government for the people."
Ms Ardern went on to say, "GDP can go up when you’re degrading your environment. We need to look more broadly about what success means and it has to mean an environment that is well looked after, people that are cared for and businesses and regions that are thriving."
She says institutions like the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) have been encouraging economies to look beyond economic measures of success, like GDP, and look at the well-being of people.
New Zealand is one of the first countries to implement this and Ms Ardern says other countries are following with interest.
Ms Adern said if ministers want money for policies from this year's Budget they will "essentially need to show that what they’re doing will improve the well-being of New Zealanders across generations".
Finance Minister Grant Robertson who is with the Prime Minister in Davos told media, "For too long budgets have just been about how much money am I as an individual minister going to get. We’re interested in the big pictures outcomes and how each minister can contribute to that."