Media statement

Interim Financial Statements of the Government of New Zealand for the Nine Months Ended 31 March 2019

Paul Helm, Chief Government Accountant

The Interim Financial Statements of the Government of New Zealand for the nine months ended 31 March 2019 (the financial statements) were released by the Treasury today.  The financial statements are compared against forecasts based on the Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2018 (HYEFU 2018) published on 13 December 2018.

Core Crown tax revenue at $60.4 billion was $0.5 billion (0.9%) below forecast.  Within this, GST was $0.4 billion below forecast and corporate tax $0.2 billion below forecast.

Core Crown expenses of $63.5 billion were $0.6 billion (0.9%) below forecast. Of this, $0.2 billion related to education expenses which were lower than forecast as a result of demand-driven factors across all sectors.  Below forecast social assistance benefits and impairment of sovereign receivables made up a further $0.3 billion of this variance. The remainder of the variance was spread across a number of different areas.

The operating balance before gains and losses (OBEGAL) was a surplus of $2.5 billion, $0.3 billion higher than forecast.  This was primarily driven by the Crown Entity sector with the largest impact relating to the Earthquake Commission.

When total gains and losses are added to the OBEGAL result, the operating balance was a $4.1 billion deficit, $6.8 billion lower than forecast. Total net losses were $6.7 billion, largely due to decreases in the discount rate (used to value long term liabilities in today’s dollars) and unfavourable movements in exchange rates.

Core Crown residual cash was a deficit of $2.6 billion, which was in line with forecast.

Net core Crown debt at $60.5 billion, or 20.6% of GDP was also close to forecast.

Total borrowings of $112.5 billion was $1.1 billion (1.0%) higher than forecast, primarily relating to the higher than forecast issuance of Treasury Bills.

Net worth attributable to the Crown at $125.9 billion (42.9% of GDP) was $7.0 billion lower than the forecast largely due to the operating balance deficit.

$ million Year to date Full Year
March 2019
March 2019
HYEFU 2018
HYEFU 2018
HYEFU 2018
June 2019
HYEFU 2018
Core Crown          
Core Crown tax revenue 60,374 60,916 (542) (0.9) 84,325
Core Crown revenue 65,635 66,110 (475) (0.7) 91,323
Core Crown expenses 63,547 64,130 583 0.9 88,669
Core Crown residual cash (2,626) (3,128) 502 16.0 (4,993)
Net core Crown debt4 60,514 61,369 855 1.4 62,677
as a percentage of GDP 20.6% 20.9%     20.9%
Gross debt5 85,374 83,447 (1,927) (2.3) 82,767
as a percentage of GDP 29.1% 28.5%     27.6%
Total Crown          
Operating balance before gains and losses 2,522 2,193 329 15.0 1,724
Operating balance (excluding minority interests) (4,093) 2,662 (6,755) (253.8) 3,112
Total borrowings 112,476 111,364 (1,112) (1.0) 111,369
Net worth attributable to the Crown 125,903 132,902 (6,999) (5.3) 133,480
  1. Using the most recently published GDP (for the year ended 31 December 2018) of $293,233 million (Source: Stats NZ).
  2. Favourable variances against forecast have a positive sign and unfavourable variances against forecast have a negative sign.
  3. Using HYEFU 18 forecast GDP for the year ending 30 June 2019 of $300,168 million (Source: The Treasury).
  4. Net core Crown debt excluding student loans and other advances. Net debt may fluctuate during the year largely reflecting the timing of tax receipts.
  5. Gross sovereign-issued debt excluding settlement cash and Reserve Bank bills.



Kamlesh Patel | Office of the Government Accountant
Tel: +64 4 917 6094
Email: [email protected]