Revenue Minister Peter Dunne today launched two new tax scholarships named after Robin Oliver, a leading light in New Zealand tax policy in recent decades.
Mr Dunne said the scholarships will benefit New Zealand and its economy by supporting continued high quality tax policy.
The Tax Policy Scholarship Award and the Tax Policy Lecture Visit will jointly be known as the Robin Oliver Tax Policy Scholarships, and administered by the Tax Policy Charitable Trust.
The Scholarship Award will provide a development opportunity for a person deemed likely to be a future tax policy leader, Mr Dunne said.
The Tax Policy Lecture Visit is designed to attract the best international thinkers on tax policy and create sustainable networks with these leading thinkers to broaden and deepen tax policy expertise in New Zealand, he said.
The initial visiting lecturer will be Professor Alan Auerbach, a world-leading authority on tax policy.
He is the Robert D. Burch Professor of Economics and Law, Director of the Burch Center for Tax Policy and Public Finance, and former Chair of the Economics Department at the University of California, Berkeley. Dates are yet to be confirmed, but it is likely that he will be in New Zealand around mid-March next year.
Applications for the Tax Policy Scholarship Award will be called for early next year.
Mr Dunne described the Robin Oliver Tax Policy Scholarships as an exciting development that will be keenly contested.
“They will contribute to keeping New Zealand at the leading edge of tax policy thinking and development, and it is appropriate that they are named in honour of a man who has done just that through a long and distinguished career,” he said.
Mr Dunne also thanked Ian Kuperus and Chris Cunliffe of Tax Management New Zealand for establishing the scholarships, saying that sound tax policy was fundamental to a successful economy.
“It is a generous and far-reaching commitment on their part,” he said.
Application guidelines and criteria will be made available early in 2013.