Monthly Archives February 2009

FTA Negotiation for NZ and India

February 26, 2009 New Zealand Finance  No comments

It has been agreed by New Zealand and Indian Trade Ministers Tim Groser and Kamal Nath, respectively, that India and New Zealand will commence bilateral Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations.

The agreement is based on a Joint Study performed by the two countries which explored the benefits of a possible FTA between the two countries. Having reached an agreement that the study indicated definite positives for both nations it has been agreed that negations will commence. While no definite schedule has been released, Tim Goser has said that it is aimed at commencing before the end of 2009.

Tim Goser extolled many benefit of the FTA, specifically the fast growing nature of the Indian economy.

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Interest Free Student Loans Extended

February 25, 2009 New Zealand FinanceNew Zealand Taxation  No comments

The list of situations under which an individual qualifies for interest write-offs on their student loans has been expanded by Order of the Council, according to statements made by Revenue Minister Peter Dunne on the 23rd of February.

Four New Zealand charitable associations who have volunteers overseas have been added to the list of groups who are eligible for student loan interest write-offs for the participants. The change will come into effect of the 1st of April with Australian Volunteers International, Pioneers (New Zealand), Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand and Students Partnership Worldwide (Australia) being the groups. There are currently 54 organizations already on the list approved.

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Student Loan Interest Raised

February 24, 2009 New Zealand FinanceNew Zealand Taxation  No comments

The interest rate applied to Student Loan balances was raised on the 23 of February.

According to media statements made by Revenue Minister Peter Dunne, as of the 1st of April 2009, the new rate will be 6.8%. The previous rate was 6.7%. Due to the fact that interest is written off for graduates staying in New Zealand, the change will only be felt by those with student loans who are working overseas or are out of New Zealand for more than 6 months.

The rate is set by taking a five year average of the government ten year bond’s yield, plus a small extra to cover the likes of administration costs associated with the loans. The long run average is used to ease the effect of spikes and short term troughs in the interest rate.

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Government Tax Income below Expectation

February 23, 2009 New Zealand Taxation  No comments

The Governmental spending power is lower than the forecast pre-election figures, a lower tax revenue is blamed.

According to the financial statements released by the New Zealand Government under the Public Finance Act 1989, the government is operating with a much lower monetary amount than previously predicted. Chief blame behind this rest with the lowered tax revenue experienced by the government, with figures of $29,344 million as opposed to the December forecast of $30,529 million. Similarly the Crown’s core expenses were almost one billion dollars higher than expected.

ACC contributed a nearly $2.4 billion dollar extra loss to the government budget, on top of the tax lowering...

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