Everyone faces the occasional unexpected bill that can throw a household budget.  The same goes for Government.  Despite the extra spending required after the Canterbury earthquakes the Government is still on track to achieve its goals.

The National-led Government will return the budget to surplus in 2014/15 – a year sooner than forecast – reducing the need for Government borrowing and lifting national savings.  Forecast economic growth will be 4 per cent in 2012, with 170,000 new jobs being created by 2015.

We are taking a responsible approach to spending that reins in unaffordable expenditure while protecting our most vulnerable citizens and keeping a focus on improving frontline public services.

So, despite the economic challenges of the past three years, National has made good progress in our plan to strengthen the economy and deliver better incomes, more jobs and improved living standards for New Zealanders and their families.