The New Zealand government announced on Tuesday a stimulus package of NZ $ 12.1 billion (more than US $ 7.3 billion or € 6.5 billion) to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy of the oceanic country. .
This fund, which represents 4 percent of New Zealand's Gross Domestic Product, exceeds the government's response to the 2008 international financial crisis and represents the most important economic measure undertaken by this country in peacetime.
"The government is doing everything possible to protect the health of New Zealanders and the health of our economy," New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said in a statement highlighting that this package is proportional to GDP larger than those implemented by the United States, United Kingdom or Australia.
This stimulus allocates almost most of the money to keep workers in their jobs as it contributes NZ $ 5.1 billion (about US $ 3.1 billion or more than € 2.75 billion) to subsidize the salaries of business employees affected.
It also allocates NZ $ 2.8 billion (about US $ 1.7 billion or more than € 1.5 billion) to support low-income people with increased pensions and aid to pay for electricity, while an equivalent amount will serve to compensate business tax payments.
The government is also giving an initial injection of NZ $ 500 million (about US $ 300 million or more than € 250 million) to healthcare to employ more workers and make tests for the virus and masks available to the sector, among other resources necessary for your treatment.
Other amounts will be destined for the deployment of personnel or aid for self-confinement, among others.
"I want to make it clear that this is not a single package, it is only the beginning. As we go through this crisis towards economic recovery, the government will constantly monitor the situation and adjust its response," Finance Minister Grant said in another statement. Robertson.
The stimulus package joins another, practically the same amount, announced last January of NZ $ 12 billion (more than US $ 7.3 billion or more than 6.5 billion euros) to boost the economy in New Zealand, where They have registered 8 infections.
Given the spread of the pandemic, various countries have announced stimulus packages in the face of the threat of a recession, while their central banks have announced cuts in interest rates, including New Zealand, which set them on Monday at 0.25 per cent. hundred.