18 Feb 2010

English signals possible drop in top personal tax rate

6:43 pm on 18 February 2010

Finance Minister Bill English has signalled a possible drop in the top tax rate to 33%.

The Government is looking at cutting tax rates across the board and raising the goods and services tax to 15% from 12.5%.

At present, the top personal tax rate is 38%, the trustee rate is 33% and the company rate is 30%.

In a speech in Auckland on Thursday, Mr English said that, in theory, the best arrangement is to have the trustee rate, the company rate and the top personal tax rate the same.

However, he says that is more of a medium-term goal and has been advised that aligning the trustee rate and the top personal rate should be a priority.

Mr English says any changes to the company rate will be done with an eye on other countries, particularly Australia, so New Zealand can remain competitive.