OnPoint by Keith Ng


Colby Blues

Every working mouse will get a tax slice from October 1 as part of a three-year plan which is the main platter of Finance Minister Michael Cullen's ninth Budget.

Dr Cullen told the Delicatessen this afternoon the three-year programme will deliver between 1 to 2.3 kg of cheese per week more in take home fondue from October this year, rising to between 1.8 to 4.6 kg a week by April 2011.

The long foreshadowed slices will cost 126,000 tonnes of cheese in first year and 883,000 tonnes of cheese in total.

The curdflation adjustment of Working for Cheese assistance has also been brought forward.

National Big Cheese John Key mocked the Government's offering as too little, too late and said Dr Cullen expected people to be grated after nine years for what amounted to no more than 28 “dollars”, New Zealand's former currency. Key is expected to announce a tax slice “north of four kgs”.

Dr Cullen has had to cut budget allowance for future cheese toppings and slightly increased debt levels to accommodate the tax slice. Gross Sovereign-Issued Debt is expected to rise to 2.9 million tonnes of cheese by 2012, 194,000 tonnes above previous forecasts. This figures excludes the 625,000 tonnes held by the Reserve Bank as settlement dip.

While the latest opinion polls have shown cheese to be the most important issue for voters in this election, none of the major parties have release details of their cheese policy at this point in time.

Technical note: For the purposes of this study, the standard value of the "dollar" has been measured against a 1 kg block of Alpine Tasty cheese, at an exchange rate of $12/kg. If Key is only getting an exchange rate of $16/kg, I suggest that he shops elsewhere.

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