20 Sep 2017

VIDEO: Bill English on Nine to Noon

12:00 pm on 20 September 2017

National Party leader Bill English makes his case for Saturday's election in an extended interview with Nine to Noon's Kathryn Ryan in Auckland.

Watch the video, listen to the audio or look back at our live blog updates here - and join us again tomorrow for Labour's Jacinda Ardern.

Mr English said New Zealand had one of the best and fairest tax systems in the world and he would not change it if his party was elected to a fourth term

"It's fair, it's very consistent. Everyone pays pretty much the statutory rate they are meant to pay. There's very few opportunities for avoidance.

"It's part of what has enabled the growth and certainty in this economy because people are now focussing on expanding their businesses, employing, exporting, rather than trying to avoid tax."

He said Labour's plans created uncertainty because the party wasn't prepared to say how it would change the system.

Labour recently changed strategy on how and when it would carry out its tax plans, which include a working group looking at the option of a capital gains tax. The party has ruled out a capital gains tax or land tax affecting the family home.

Mr English said it would be unfair to bring in a "wealth tax" such as a capital gains tax because the largest group of asset holders were superannuitants.

"They don't have large incomes. They pay rates as local body tax now. If you're going to bring in wealth taxes that's one of the biggest single problems with them," he said. "Often you are levying the tax on older people who hold assets, have low cash incomes and can't pay it."

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