(National Party media release)

The Government’s terms of reference for the  Royal Commission of Inquiry’s examination of the covid-19 economic response are a complete snowjob and show a contempt for New Zealanders struggling through a deepening cost of living crisis, National’s Finance Spokesperson Nicola Willis says.

“The terms of reference make a mockery of the Finance Minister’s commitment last year to a “more comprehensive evaluation” of the economic response to covid-19.

“They deliberately exclude investigation of the ongoing impact the Government’s massive programme of money-printing, borrowing and spending has had on inflation, interest rates and the wider economy.

“Instead, the terms are forward-looking, requiring only that reviewers look at “settings required to support New Zealand’s immediate economic response to a future pandemic”.  They specifically exclude examination of particular decisions taken by the Reserve Bank.

“The economic inquiry can’t be taken seriously unless it asks these questions: Did the Reserve Bank print too much money and keep interest rates too low for too long? Did the Government borrow and spend too much money? Is the cost of living crisis worse than it might have been as a result of these decisions?

“Instead, the Government has taken a “see no evil, hear no evil” approach in a deliberate attempt to avoid any accountability for the economic pain New Zealand is now enduring. While many countries around the world stimulated their economies to get through covid-19, New Zealand went much harder than most.

“Those who ignore the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them. The Government must put New Zealand’s interests ahead of its own political interests and ensure a proper examination of economic actions and consequences. 

“National repeats its call for a full independent inquiry into the fiscal and monetary policy responses to covid-19 and their ongoing impacts. In the absence of co-operation from the Government we will join other parties in Parliament to request that the Finance and Expenditure Select Committee initiate its own inquiry.”

There are a lot more aspects that need investigation beyond purely economic ones — the massive negative effect on mental health of Lockdowns, the relationship between Bloomfield and Fauci, the role of Big Pharma pushing their product and their windfall profits, the authorisation and promotion of a substance that was not fit for purpose, the negative attitude to low cost and effective existing cures (such as Ivermectin), why the government signed any kind of secrecy deal with Pfizer, why it shut down whistle-blowers and any kind of debate, and of course, the extensive corrupt practices by the medical profession. —Eds