New Zealand Prime Minister John Key began forming a government after his National party gained its best election result in 60 years, giving him the mandate to sell state assets in an effort to eliminate a budget deficit.
Key met with senior ministers today and plans talks tomorrow with the ACT and United Future parties, which helped him command a majority in the last parliament and have pledged to back him again. With 60 seats in the 121-member parliament, Key will be able to govern with support from the two parties, which both have one seat.
“It’s my intention over the next three years to run a government that’s very much along the lines and similar to the previous government that we ran in 2008 to 2011,” Key told reporters in Auckland today. “I expect it to be a balanced government, I expect it to be moderate.”
National won 48 percent of votes, the most it has taken since 1951, beating the main opposition Labour Party on 27 percent, according to the Electoral Commission. In his second term, the 50-year-old multimillionaire and former foreign exchange head at Merrill Lynch & Co. must steer New Zealand’s recovery from its worst natural disaster in 80 years amid global economic turmoil.