Luxon won't be drawn on whether he backs Reserve Bank boss

Source: 1News

National's leader Christopher Luxon would not be drawn on whether or not Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr would get his support for another term.

Christopher Luxon.

Luxon told Breakfast: "Look, we’re not interested in whether he does or doesn’t, we’re interested in making sure the Reserve Bank of New Zealand doesn’t have mission creep.

"We don’t want to see it politicised. It’s really important it stays independent so it has the trust of the people and the New Zealand Government."

Orr's term as governor ends in March 2023.

Luxon's comments come after National's finance spokesperson, Simon Bridges, changed his tune after saying he wouldn't reappoint Orr when appearing on The Working Group podcast.

Bridges told interest.co.nz on Tuesday, however: "In the end, there’s merit in sticking to your knitting. It’s not all Adrian Orr’s fault actually, it’s also the fault of Grant Robertson — giving the RBNZ too much to do."

The Reserve Bank first raised the official cash rate to 0.5 per cent in October. It then raised it again — to 0.75 per cent — in November. It is the first time the central bank has increased the benchmark rate in seven years, as it aims to tackle rising inflation.

Despite being predicted by economists, the move has still copped criticism.

Asked on Breakfast if the Reserve Bank Act was in his sights if National were to form a Government, Luxon said he wanted the bank to be focused on price stability, mentioning the average Kiwi's wages have gone up.

"Kiwis are going backwards under this Government."