Did the PM (Willfully) Mislead Kiwis as to why NZ may avoid Recession?
In introducing Budget 2023 on the Beehive website, the Prime Minister stated:
"Budget 2023 includes a massive boost to our nation’s infrastructure which has been tested during the recent flooding & cyclone .. We’ve allocated significant funds to build back more resilient so we can be better prepared for more extreme weather in the future. Those investments have the benefit of keeping our economy humming, helping us to avoid a recession and supporting New Zealanders into work".
Not true. The reason why NZ may avoid a recession is due to record high immigration. After just setting an all-time monthly record, it has run at a 50,000 net gain over the past year, or 1% of our population. Immigration is set to reach record heights in the coming years given the new settings. The amount of spending stemming from the recent bad weather pales into trivial insignificance in terms of its effect on GDP.
What's more, recessions are defined by whether total GDP has been rising or falling. More immigration increases that total, even though GDP per person may fall. The PM knows full well that the hundreds of thousands more immigrants now expected the next few years will collapse our infrastructure, jam even more Auckland's already jammed roads, collapse our health system, and present an impossible-to-satisfy burden on schools. He doesn't care since all he wants is to keep GDP from falling for the next 5 months leading up to the election.
If you want some hard evidence to prove the claims I am making, how come in the UK, where immigration has also just hit 1% of their population, that leading news outlets like the Telegraph are running headlines, "Higher immigration helps Britain avoid recession". By contrast, in NZ the media are instead running headlines repeating the PM's bogus line that we may avoid recession due to repairs after the Auckland floods.
For the PM to mislead the nation in a formal statement introducing Budget 2023 by not telling the full truth sets a new low in political disinformation.