Hon BILL ENGLISH (Minister of Finance): I think the black hole was what David Shearer is staring into. The other little thing was David Cunliffe getting ready to push him.
Rt Hon JOHN KEY: Well, one of the biggest threats facing New Zealand could be a Labour- Greens Government. Let us get it right. The Green Party policy—correct me if I am wrong—is that it supports a target of between 25 and 40 percent reduction in global emissions by 2020. It would demand a huge increase in the emissions trading scheme and the cost on New Zealand families. Let us be upfront. Let us have that debate when we are on TV in those debates talking about how the Green Party is going to force New Zealand consumers to pay a truckload more money every single week, and let us see whether New Zealand consumers like it. If they do, good luck; you will be Minister of Finance.
Rt Hon JOHN KEY: No, I do not agree with that, and I go back to the fundamental point. If the member wants to see New Zealand with a more significantly increased target, as he does—fair enough; that is the Green Party’s policy—then let us understand what that means. It means much bigger costs for New Zealand consumers and New Zealand businesses. That means fewer jobs, and that means New Zealand being less competitive while the rest of the world is doing very little. If that is the member’s policy, fair enough. That is why he wants to be the Minister of Finance. But in the world that we live in over here, which is the real world, we do not support his view on climate change.
Rt Hon JOHN KEY: That is right, and that is why this Government will have a firm binding target in its long-term plan for reductions in global emissions. That is why we have an emissions trading scheme, and that is why we are investing in the greenhouse gas alliance. I go back to the point I made earlier. The member wants New Zealand to have an emissions trading scheme and a cost on its consumers way above everywhere else in the world—fair enough. He wants New Zealand consumers to pay way more than the average American, way more than the average Australian, way more than the average Canadian, and way more, actually, than people in Europe— fair enough. But he should go into the election campaign and be honest with those New Zealand voters: vote Greens; you will pay a lot more money.
Rt Hon JOHN KEY: I have seen reports of a policy to build around 66,000 houses for $300,000 each. Then the policy got changed to be about building small apartments and terraced houses in Auckland. Then the cost went up to a maximum of $550,000. Then today I see it is back down to—I cannot actually work out whether it is $300,000, $400,000, or $485,000—which makes me tempted to think that Labour makes it up on the fly. But if I go back to my point about the KiwiBuild scheme, the example of the Housing Foundation, where the Government put in $2 million, the interesting point there is that if we were to do the same thing for an estimated price of $425,000, that would translate to 66,000 homes at a cost of $8.8 billion. That is the level of subsidy required.