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Media Statement Changes to the release of Budget information

21 April 2009

Immediate Release

The Government is updating processes for releasing material for this year’s Budget. These changes are to establish clear rules for involvement in Budget lock-ups and embargoed access to Budget documents, recognising the availability of material on-line and the need for security in this and future Budgets.

The changes:

  • Recognise the need for information to be accessible to the public and the role of news media in providing that information.
  • Set clear, fair and workable rules.
  • Reduce costs and make the most of on-line delivery.
  • Improve the security of Budget information.

The process for releasing Budget material this year is:

  • The embargo for Budget material will end at 2pm on May 28.
  • No information will be made available prior to the 2pm embargo expiry except documents which are provided to people attending the lock-up hosted by the Treasury in Wellington. This lock-up is for accredited news media and organisations and financial and economic analysts.
  • At 2pm all Budget material will be available on the Beehive and Treasury websites.
  • News media will be able to leave the lock-up at 1.55pm so they can cover the Budget speech in Parliament. Analysts must remain in the lock-up until 2pm.

There will be a limited number of places available at the lock-up.   Priority will be given to:

  • Media with parliamentary press accreditation;
  • Economic and financial analysts attached to either:
    • Financial institutions e.g. registered banks; or
    • National organisations who provide relevant specialist advisory services.

Any remaining places will be allocated at the discretion of the Office of the Minister of Finance.

We will be asking for registrations for the lock-up next week and recommend relevant organisations respond promptly to ensure media and analysts are appropriately accommodated.   

ENDS

Contact for Media

Chris Bunny | Manager, Fiscal Management
Tel: +64 4 917 6201
chris.bunny@treasury.govt.nz
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