New Zealand Government Formation Inches Ahead as Leaders Meet

(Bloomberg) -- Leaders of the three New Zealand political parties in talks to form the next government met in Auckland Wednesday, adding to signs they are getting closer to an agreement.

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National Party leader Christopher Luxon posted a photo on social media of him with ACT Party leader David Seymour and New Zealand First leader Winston Peters around a table.

“Good meeting. There’s still work to do — but making serious progress to forming a government to deliver for Kiwis” Luxon posted on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter.

New Zealand voted on Oct. 14 to oust the Labour government, but failed to give National and its ally ACT enough support to form a majority in parliament. Official results published Nov. 3 confirmed that a three-way arrangement would be needed, and talks have been progressing slowly since then.

Prime Minister-elect Luxon opted to miss the APEC leaders’ summit this week, saying forming a government is his priority.

Seymour told Radio New Zealand the meeting had been “congenial and promising” but said that doesn’t necessarily mean a deal is imminent.

“Obviously each of us have quite a lot of detail to work out with each other in terms of how those particular policies and so on will go,” he said, according to the broadcaster.

National campaigned on a tax cut proposal in part funded by a levy on foreign purchases of expensive homes, but Peters has expressed reservations about the plan.

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