Finance Minister Bill English says the upcoming budget will be the toughest he has had to present.
He made the comments at a Deloitte function in Christchurch last night to a large crowd of business executives.
Mr English said record low prices were good for households but were tough for the Government.
"We [the Government] like inflation ... It means we collect more tax on the $120 billion that's on deposit in New Zealand bank accounts," he said.
"It's not happening and it's forcing [the] Government to be honest about its revenue and what it can spend on.
"While we've been in Government for seven years, this is the toughest budget that we've dealt with."
The budget will be released on 21 May.