The Government says its tax reforms are benefiting lower income households, and it's got the figures to prove it.
Acting Finance Minister Steven Joyce has released new Treasury data showing the top 10 percent of households will pay 37.2 percent of total income tax this financial year, compared with 35.5 percent in 2007/08.
"This latest data confirms New Zealand's income tax and support system significantly redistributes incomes to households in need," he said.
"Higher income households are paying a larger share of income tax than they were in 2008, and lower income households are paying less - the 30 percent of households with the lowest incomes are forecast to pay just 5.4 percent of income tax compared with 6.3 percent in 2007/08."
Mr Joyce says Treasury estimates that in the current financial year 42 percent of households will pay less in income tax than they receive from welfare benefits, Working for Families, superannuation and accommodation subsidies.
"For the 30 percent of households with the lowest incomes, the $1.7 billion of income tax they are expected to pay will be more than offset by the $10.6b they will receive in income support."