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New Zealand’s Nicola Willis Says She’ll Resign if National Fails to Deliver Tax Cuts

(Bloomberg) -- Nicola Willis, who would become New Zealand’s next finance minister if her National Party wins the October election, said she would resign if her party fails to deliver the income tax cuts it has promised.

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“If we didn’t deliver tax reduction, yes I would resign,” Willis told TVNZ’s Breakfast Friday in Wellington. “We are making a commitment to the New Zealand people and we intend to keep it.”

National, the main opposition party, has pledged relief from a cost-of-living crisis by raising the thresholds at which tax rates apply. It plans to partly fund the package by allowing foreigners to buy houses worth more than NZ$2 million ($1.2 million) — partially repealing a ban — and applying a 15% tax to those purchases.

However, critics claim National’s plan vastly over-estimates the number of houses that would be sold to foreigners, leaving a big shortfall in revenue for the tax cuts.

“We stand by our plan, it’s credible and it will allow us to deliver meaningful tax relief to working people,” Willis told TVNZ.

The election will be held on Oct. 14. National had 39% support in a 1News/Verian opinion poll this week and could form a government with the ACT Party. The ruling Labour Party dropped to 28% support.

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