NZ First wants GST off food

HAMISH RUTHERFORD
Last updated 15:07 20/07/2014

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NZ First has announced a plan to remove GST from food, as part of several policies announced at its party conference.

Leader Winston Peters also said the party wanted GST removed from rates on residential property calling it a "tax on tax deceit".

"This bold policy aims at the heart of the inequality undermining our society," Peters said.

Labour had a policy of removing GST from fresh fruit and vegetables going into the 2011 election but it has since been dropped by the party. Last week Peters accused the Conservative Party of plagiarism because it believed the party was lifting its policies.

Peters said the policy was estimated to cost $3 billion a year, and would be funded by a clamp down on "tax evasion and the black economy", which it estimated to cost $7 billion a year, and what Peters said was "drawing on the projected surplus of billions in the years ahead that result from running a sound economy".

He also announced a new policy to tackle binge drinking and drug taking.

"We propose, to the degree that it could cause serious harm to themselves, or someone else, it will be an offence to be drunk or seriously drug affected in a public place, or while trespassing on private property," with offenders paying fines of up to $2000 or three months in prison.

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