Have your say: Cullen wants scheme surplus put into Cullen fund

Have your say: Cullen wants scheme surplus put into Cullen fund
NZ Finance Minister Michael CullenFinance Minister Michael Cullen has announced a Labour-led government would put any surplus revenue from the government's retail and wholesale deposit guarantee schemes into the New Zealand Super Fund (commonly called the Cullen Fund) once the scheme's liabilities had expired. "As these premiums are an offset against liabilities under the schemes it is important that they are not frittered away," Cullen said in a statement. The retail scheme is designed to expire after two years and the wholesale scheme is set up to discourage the banks from using it for more than one year. Firstly, premiums would be held in a ring-fenced account to ensure that they were available to meet any liabilities under the two schemes, but as those liabilities came to an end those funds would be invested in the New Zealand Super Fund, Cullen said. "With markets likely to continue to be a in a weak state for some time, it makes sense to increase investment in the New Zealand Super Fund which does not need to be realising any of its assets for another 20 years or so," he said, adding the premiums raised could be "hundreds of millions of dollars or even more depending on the take-up of the scheme." "The fund is there as a long term patient investor, so buying cheap in the expectation of substantial long term gains makes a lot of sense." Using this money to fund short term consumption would be both irresponsible and short sighted, Cullen said. What I think This is a good idea. Anything that stops politicians from using the proceeds from these schemes as a glorified slush fund is an excellent move. The Cullen fund was also a good idea to start with and Cullen should be given credit for a visionary and long term decision. The big banks are likely to welcome this. They were worried all their premiums had already been pledged by the electioneering parties. National should come out and agree to do this too. Your view Comments below please

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