Long awaited High Wealth Individual Research released by Minister David Parker’s office today shows, again, the Government must act to tax wealth and create a fair economy.
“New Zealanders have long felt what has today been confirmed by Government research: our tax system is unfair. The wealthiest pay less than half the effective tax of the average family,” says Green Party revenue spokesperson Chlöe Swarbrick.
“Rules put in place by successive Governments privilege wealth hoarding. Not only are these rules unfair, they’re counterproductive and starve our health, education, transport and social services. They privatise profit and socialise cost.
“Today’s research shows the wealthiest New Zealanders pay on average 9.5% tax, including GST, on their economic income. Meanwhile, someone with a salary of $80,000 pays around 28-29% on their economic income, including GST.
“The only barrier to a fair tax system, well-funded public services and ensuring everyone has what they need to survive is political willpower.
“Let’s be clear: to allow millionaires to continue to not pay their fair share after this explosive evidence is a political choice. Poverty is a political choice.
“While the richest have profited handsomely throughout economic choices of COVID-19, many of my constituents in Auckland Central, and New Zealanders across the country, have struggled to get by. These were political decisions.
“With the highest rates of wealth inequality on record in this country, where the top 10% own 60-70% of the wealth and the bottom half - two and a half million New Zealanders - hold just 2%, we have a foundational problem. The problem only gets worse when our tax system supercharges inequality.
“The question now is whether the Government will act. Whether they will show the courage of Michael Joseph Savage and fix our crumbling infrastructure with taxes on those who profited handsomely during hard times for many.
“The Greens are proud to have long fought for taxing wealth fairly, through a capital gains tax or a wealth tax. The evidence today continues to make the case crystal clear.
“New Zealanders have the power to put more Green MPs in Government at the election to ensure a fairer tax system and fair society,” says Chlöe Swarbrick.