Budget 2018

Through Budget 2018 the Government invested $1.1 billion of funding over 4 years for research, science and innovation. This grew the total Government investment by 26% from $1.58 billion in 2017/18 to $1.99 billion in 2019/20.


Budget 2018 funding invested in new initiatives that stimulated increased business expenditure on R&D, invested in critical research, science and innovation infrastructure, and leveraged our international science relationships.

Budget 2018 Initiatives 18/19 19/20 20/21 21/22 Total
R&D tax credit $70m $280m $320m $350m $1020m
Measurement Standards Laboratory $2.5m $5.3m $4.2m $4.9m $16.9m
National Research Information System $3.9m $2.4m $2.2m $1.6m $10.1m
Science Cooperation with Singapore $12.0m $15.0m $15.0m $15.0m $57.0m
Total new funding $88.4m $302.7m $341.4m $371.5m $1104.0m

Budget 2018 demonstrated the Government’s commitment to lifting R&D spending to 2% of GDP by 2027. This package was the Government’s first investment in an inclusive, adaptive and resilient economy, underpinned by science and innovation.

Read the Science and Innovation Briefings on Budget 2018, 2 November 2017 - 15 May 2018 [PDF, 5.3 MB], released consistent with the Official Information Act.

Our initiatives receiving increased funding

Tax incentive

Through Budget 2018 the Government’s new R&D tax incentive received $1.02 billion over 4 years. This funding enabled the Government to deliver a 15% tax credit on eligible expenditure over $50,000 for businesses doing R&D in New Zealand. The credit is available for eligible expenditure incurred from 1 April 2019. Read more about the R&D tax incentive(external link).

Measurement Standards Laboratory (MSL)

The Government invested $16.9 million over 4 years in revitalising the Measurement Standards Laboratory. This was made up of $8.33m of new operational funding and $8.59m of new capital funding over 4 years. The funding supported MSL to maintain and adapt its metrology services so that it continues to support New Zealand’s businesses to grow, diversify and export.

Science Cooperation with Singapore

$57 million was set aside for joint research programmes in data science and future food science, supporting delivery of a new bilateral ‘Enhanced Partnership’ with Singapore. Funding is being made available now to enable negotiations with Singapore to be concluded.

National Research Information System

$10.1 million was budgeted for development of the National Research Information System (NRIS), an information hub where people can easily find information about research, science and innovation in New Zealand.

Learn more about NRIS.(external link)


Last updated: 14 May 2020