Additional investment in early childhood education, children with special needs, and new schools and classrooms takes annual education spending above 11 billion NZ dollars (7.39 billion U.S. dollars) for the first time, Education Minister Hekia Parata said in a statement.


“Education is the key to the future and this investment, at a time of low inflation, demonstrates the government’s ongoing commitment to raising achievement for all our kids,” Parata said.

Budget 2016 provided additional education investment of 1.44 billion NZ dollars (967.82 million U.S. dollars), including extra funding for early childhood education, for schools educating children most at risk of under-achievement, for students with high and special educational needs, and for new school buildings.

The health budget would reach a record 16.1 billion NZ dollars (10.82 billion U.S. dollars) in 2016-2017, Health Minister Jonathan Coleman said in a statement.

An extra 2.2 billion NZ dollars (1.47 billion U.S. dollars) in health over four years for new initiatives and to meet cost pressures and population growth.

“An extra 568 million NZ dollars (381.75 million U.S. dollars) will be invested in 2016-2017 – the biggest increase in seven years, and almost 170 million NZ dollars (114.25 million U.S. dollars) more than last year,” said Coleman.

This extra funding over the next four years includes extra funding for subsidized medicines, the establishment of a bowel screening program and for vulnerable groups such as children and the mentally ill. Endit

Source: Xinhua


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