Key again defends tax cuts

Tax cuts for top earners are necessary to keep lawyers, accountants and scientists in New Zealand, Prime Minister John Key says.

Mr Key has continued to defend tax announcements to be spelled out in Thursday's budget.

Changes including a switch to lower income tax funded by a higher goods and services tax (GST) were expected.

Yesterday, Mr Key said without high income earners everyone else would have fewer services.

"We can be envious about these things but without those people in our economy all the rest of us will either have less people paying tax or fundamentally less services that they provide," he told TVNZ's Breakfast show.

Later he told reporters the people in the top tax bracket were "core and critical categories" for the economy.

"They include doctors, entrepreneurs often, scientists, engineers, lawyers, accountants, school principals and nurses.

"On Thursday you will see a deliberate attempt to make sure those people stay and put their skills to work here in our economy."

Mr Key said changes to the tax system were about making it fairer.

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