“Grant Robertson is putting a brave face on Labour’s Brain Drain Budget, but the figures don’t lie. Compared to the same forecasts made in December, we are going to have mode deficit spending, more debt, and much more interest on Government, so why would you believe his optimism now?” asks ACT Leader David Seymour.

“Interest rates on Government debt have increased a whopping $1.7 billion, giving Kiwis even less reason to stick around.

“Today’s Budget shows that Kiwis will be paying an extra $1.7B in interest payments than was forecast in December. This coming year’s interest payments were forecast to be $3.67 billion this year, instead Treasury now forecasts that $5.23 billion of taxpayer money will go on interest from Labour’s debt blow out.

“The Government’s deficit will be $5.8 billion worse than was forecast only six months ago. The deficit was forecast to be $800 million, not it will be $6.6 billion.

“As a result, Labour will keep the books in deficit for a year longer than forecast in December.  Now we won’t reach surplus until 2025, instead of 2024. The peak of Government debt will be $15 billion higher than forecast in December.

“To cap it all off the Cost of Living crisis rolls into 2024. In December Treasury forecast that inflation next year would be 3.1 per cent, still high. Now the forecast that it will be 5.2 per cent, catastrophic for squeezed families who got no relief in this budget.

“This shows you can’t trust Labour when it comes to economic management. None of their forecasts are trustworthy. ACT predicts they will keep deteriorating because Labour are ignoring the warning signs instead of changing course.”