Inland Revenue - Tax policy Tax Policy

News and information about the Government's tax policy work programme, including:
- proposed changes to the laws that Inland Revenue is responsible for
- updates on the progress of bills through Parliament
- policy announcements

Tax policy news

12 May 2020

Supplementary Order Paper No 488 to the COVID-19 (Further Management Measures) Legislation Bill was released today by the Leader of the House, the Hon Chris Hipkins. The SOP includes enabling amendments to ensure that the Small Business Cashflow (Loan) Scheme launched by the Government on 12 May 2020 works as intended. It also contains some minor technical amendments to the loss carry-back rules.

For more information see the SOP and supplementary disclosure statement.

12 May 2020

The use of money interest rates are reviewed regularly to ensure they are in line with market interest rates. The interest rates on underpayments and overpayments of taxes and duties have now changed to:

- underpayment rate: 7.00% (previously 8.35%)
- overpayment rate: 0.00% (previously 0.81%)

The rates were changed by Order in Council on 4 May 2020 and came into force on 8 May 2020.

30 April 2020

The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Other Regulatory Urgent Measures) Bill introduced under urgency today has now passed through all stages. The resulting Act* will be available once it receives Royal assent.

* The Act is now available (updated 1 May 2020).

30 April 2020

The Minister of Revenue has today introduced the COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Other Regulatory Urgent Measures) Bill, the second taxation Bill in response to the coronavirus-induced economic crisis.

The Bill contains the following tax and non-tax measures:

- a temporary tax loss carry-back regime to provide cash-flow quickly to businesses;

- increases the administrative flexibility for Inland Revenue to quickly modify due dates, timeframes or other procedural requirements for taxpayers impacted by COVID-19;

- ensures the tax and social policy treatment of benefits and pensions paid to people stranded overseas is consistent with the treatment of equivalent payments to people in New Zealand;

- defers the commencement of provisions that restrict the performance of routine surgical procedures on animals so that farmers can continue to perform these;

- advances the commencement date of improved consumer protections under the Credits Contracts Legislation Amendment Act 2019, while deferring broad system changes; and

- extends the timeframe for certain Crown entities to provide planning documents to responsible or shareholding Ministers.

For more information, see the Bill, the Commentary to the Bill and the Minister’s media statement.

15 April 2020

A special report on the new legislation in the COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Act 2020 is now available. The changes were passed under urgency and enacted on 25 March 2020. Coverage of the new Act will be published in the June edition of the Tax Information Bulletin.

Tax Working Group

For the terms of reference, news, reports, and other information see the Tax Working Group's website.

Information releases

We now proactively release Cabinet papers, minutes and supporting papers for tax policy related decisions. View the latest information releases.


The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill passed through all...