ACT Party leader David Seymour is slamming the 2021 "La-la Budget", comparing it to an episode of the '90s sitcom That 70s Show.
The Government on Thursday afternoon announced its highly-anticipated Budget, which is set against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic. It included significant investment in beneficiaries along with boosts for Māori housing and infrastructure.
Finance Minister Grant Robertson said due to the spending, the Government's debt pile would almost double in the next few years. New Zealand is already more than $100 billion in debt due to COVID-19, and that's expected to reach almost $200 billion by 2024-2025.
Speaking to Newshub Nation's Budget 2021 Special after the announcement, Seymour said he wasn't happy with the amount of debt New Zealand would incur.
"It's the la-la Budget, you've got record low interest rates, high export prices, you are still borrowing $100 billion and actually there is no preparation for our future where we come out of the other side of this COVID period. The Government's idea of economic development is for the Government to fund brain construction in Dunedin, it's like an episode of That '70s Show."
He said the Budget was particularly disappointing for younger generations.
"I weep for the next generation who are going to inherit this debt from this Government that's spending $500 million restructuring the health system and only $200 million on Pharmac. In what world does it actually cost money to do a restructuring - only with Government."
During his Budget speech in Parliament, Robertson said he understood there would be varying opinions on whether the Government took on too much debt but, "I believe Budget 2021 gets the balance right", he said.
Robertson also said he stood behind the Government's response, and spending, during the COVID-19 pandemic.