Jacinda Ardern has finally declared New Zealand‘s cost of living a ‘crisis’, just days after she downplayed the situation.
It comes after fed-up Kiwis have labelled her ‘out of touch’ after she failed to declare a cost of living ‘crisis’ last week, despite the cost of living rising by 5.2 per cent for the average household within a year.
When asked if the country was experiencing a crisis last Wednesday, Ms Ardern said: ‘I wouldn’t describe it that way’.
But now Ardern has been forced to backtrack after thousands of fed up Kiwis called her comments ‘out of touch’ and on Monday morning, she declared a cost of living crisis.
‘Undoubtedly, for many families, there is [a cost of living crisis]. But I think the most important thing is regardless of what anyone’s calling it; it’s whether or not we accept that there’s something that needs to be done.’
The government is now considering measures to alleviate expenses, which will be announced on Monday afternoon.
‘We are looking at additional things we can do to ease the pressure on families. We will look to move very quickly on decisions. Any decisions taken today, we will speak to this afternoon,’ Ardern added.
‘I think regardless, regardless of the title it’s given, you can call it a crisis, an emergency, a shock – the point it is we need to do something about it.’
New Zealanders have faced a big jump in cost of living due to inflation and Russia’s war with Ukraine, which has pushed petrol prices in the country to over $3 a litre.
The government has proposed tax relief on fuel for motorists as one solution to the dilemma.
New Zealand motorists already pay some of the highest fuel prices globally, with taxes on petrol going towards building news roads, road upkeep and supporting the country’s public transport system.
Read more: Jacinda Ardern backtracks and declares a cost of living CRISIS in New Zealand – after furious Kiwis labelled her ‘out of touch’ as rent and fuel prices soar