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Nats clueless on privatisation consequences

Written By: - Date published: 11:01 am, September 7th, 2011 - 17 comments
Categories: bill english, david cunliffe, david parker, energy, national, phil goff, privatisation - Tags:

This year, the government made Meridian sell some dams to Genesis, which funded the purchase by borrowing. Meridian then paid a special dividend to the Crown. It made both Genesis and Meridian worth less. A government couldn’t make those kind of reforms if it had to consider private investors’ rights. Pretty simple, eh? Tell that to Hekia Parata.

Hon David Parker: Could steps like the requirement to sell those assets from Meridian Energy to Genesis Energy have been taken if Meridian Energy and Genesis Energy had been in partial private ownership; if so, how would the Government have achieved that?

Hon HEKIA PARATA: That is not the situation we have, and speculating on what might happen under what is proposed does not seem to me to be a reasonable question.

Hon David Parker: Is the Minister then now giving notice to anyone considering buying shares in these companies if they are sold that National might, for market reasons, intervene, with repercussions on the value of shares?

Hon HEKIA PARATA: No.

Hon David Parker: Is the Minister then now admitting that following the privatisation of shares in Meridian Energy and Genesis Energy, the Government’s ability to intervene in the market in order to get better prices is to be constrained?

Hon HEKIA PARATA: No. [Laughter]

National can’t have it both ways. Either potential investors in electricity companies have to know that purchasing shares in these companies comes with the risk that the government will, as it frequently does, use its legislative ability to drastically reform the industry and stuff their share price; or future governments wouldn’t be able to intervene, as National has, in the interests of the public because they would have to consider the rights of private investors and we really will not own our future.

Meanwhile, Bill English thinks that the fact that markets are plummeting worldwide is a good reason to be trying to sell assets on to those markets. Crazy. He also admits that at least 20-30% of what he wants to sell would go overseas.

Finally, Goff smacked the issue of foreign ownership home with English admitting there would be nothing to stop foreign buyers snapping up all the shares after an initial float.

17 comments on “Nats clueless on privatisation consequences”

  1. tc 1

    Send in the trolls……the share price may suffer but the return will still be healthy and aren’t investors in share markets meant to take a long term view anyway so prioce irrelevant ?…cue the trolls.

    • aerobubble 1.1

      Investors returns have been exceptionally high in the US, so much so
      the US has been printing money to keep up with expectations of
      investor… what did you say… long term view.

    • freedom 1.2

      methinks tc ignores the barb!
      if Assets are sold, the public must forfeit the protection of their government’s power to control pricing.
      It is not rocket science. Why sell what you already own and is of benefit to all ?

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    …or future governments wouldn’t be able to intervene, as National has, in the interests of the public…

    Nat8ional didn’t intervene in the interest of the public. What they did was intervene to prop up/hide their own mismanagement of the economy – it was all about getting that $520m special dividend. The public will be worse off due to the government mandated restructuring.

  3. randal 3

    This gutting of our country is beocming too painful to bear. We are just becoming organisms to be squeezed dry and then tossed away till the next bunch of simpletons comes along. Why dont they turn off the teevee staions and close down all the other energy extravaganzas and let people become self reliant instead of erecting more and more gilded palaces of sin.

  4. Olwyn 4

    I would actually like to see some honesty here, rather than an ongoing PR fairytale that no one believes. Does National think that any good whatsoever will come to NZ from selling these assets? If so, what is this good, and what is meant by the term NZ? The people who live in it, some of the people who live in it, approval from people who do not live in it & only care if it sinks into the sea insofar as they have a few dollars invested in it – can someone who actually knows enlighten us all?

    And if we are using the government to reduce government, why? What good,in plain terms, would result and who would it be good for?

    In the absence of anything more than fluff, smiles and lavender ties, it is hard to get away from the idea that the age of capitalism is more or less over, and that what we have in its stead is neo-feudalism with a business facade. It is a bit like the song about the man who cannot mend his roof when it is raining and does not need to when it is not raining. Give us tax cuts and assets, cry the international rich, so we can invest in things and create jobs, followed by, now that we have what we want, we do not need to do anything that creates jobs. We are doing quite well as it is, so suck on that, peasants.

    • Lanthanide 4.1

      I think (muted) public acceptance for asset sales isn’t that they will any good to NZ, just that they’re the “least bad” option we have at the moment.

      • Campbell Larsen 4.1.1

        “(muted) public acceptance for asset sales”
        “the “least bad” option we have at the moment.”

        Don’t believe the spin. The majority of the public don’t like AS at all, and they are quite possibly the very worst option that we have.

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.2

        I think its clear that people favour a CGT and a higher income tax rate when they are presented as alternatives to asset sales.

        Pah, Labour should just announce a renationalisation programme with compensation equalling cost less 10%.

        • freedom 4.1.2.1

          +1
          and deduct the ‘wiring and maintenance’ payments, both residential and commercial, that have been paid to these companies for say the last five years. It allows the companies to escape with a modicum of good faith that the money was actually spent on wiring and maintenance, even though the reality is certain to be no better than Kiwirail discovered when it looked in the shed.

  5. HC 5

    One other aspect with legal significance should be thrown into this debate!

    As far as I am informed the FTA with Mainland China has provisions that ensure, that investing companies or individuals from either country that is part to the FTA (which obviously includes NZ as that “other” party), must be treated in the same way as investors are treated that are native to the other country. This basically means that NZ cannot legislate to treat any investor from China differently to any investor locally in NZ.

    If that is true and not dependent on any particular conditions, then this means, that Chinese investors cannot be disadvantaged when shares in companies for sale are being offered to the public and market. So all this talk about 10 % caps for overseas investors is nonsensical, because it could and likely would be challenged before the courts. So once again we get government smart talk and propaganda, which will prove to be as hollow and the Prime Minister and his fellow ministers are themselves when it comes to honesty and integrity.

    If a National led government would offer 49 % of energy companies for sale, then companies or other investors from Mainland China at least could claim, that they have a right to be treated as a NZ investor, who the P.M. likes to cosily refer to as “mum and dad investors”.

    What a joke all this is!

  6. feijoa 6

    Thanks for that HC. Globalised free trade smacks us again.Perhaps Cunliffe should ask Blinglish about that too

    • HC 6.1

      Trusting that this does not breach any copyright rules, because it is simply an excerpt of text form the FTA between Mainland China and New Zealand, which can be viewed and downloaded free of charge from the following website page ‘http://www.chinafta.govt.nz/1-The-agreement/2-Text-of-the-agreement/12-Chapt-11-Investment/index.php’ , a view at the following will hopefully clarify what asset sales of NZ assets means:

      Article 137 Scope

      1. This Chapter applies to measures adopted or maintained by a Party relating to:

      investors of the other Party;
      investments of investors of the other Party.

      2. This Chapter shall not apply to measures adopted or maintained by a Party affecting trade in services.

      3. Notwithstanding paragraph 2, for the purpose of protection of investment with respect to the commercial presence mode of service supply, Articles 14210, 143, 144, 145 and 148 shall apply to any measure affecting the supply of a service by a service supplier of a Party through commercial presence in the territory of the other Party. Section 2 shall apply to Articles 142, 143, 144, 145 and 148 with respect to the supply of a service through commercial presence.

      4. For greater certainty, the provisions of this Chapter do not bind either Party in relation to any act or fact that took place or any situation that ceased to exist before the date of entry into force of this Agreement.

      5. This Chapter shall not apply to:

      subsidies or grants provided by a Party; or
      laws, regulations, policies or procedures of general application governing the procurement by government agencies of goods and services purchased for governmental purposes and not with a view to commercial resale or with a view to use in the production of goods or the supply of services for commercial sale.

      6. This Chapter shall apply to all investments made by investors of a Party in the territory of the other Party, whether made before or after the entry into force of this Agreement, but Section 2 shall not apply to any dispute or any claim concerning an investment which was already under judicial or arbitral process before the entry into force of this Agreement.

      Article 138 National Treatment

      Each Party shall accord to investments and activities associated with such investments, with respect to management, conduct, operation, maintenance, use, enjoyment or disposal, by the investors of the other Party treatment no less favourable than that accorded, in like circumstances, to the investments and associated activities by its own investors.

      Article 139 Most-favoured-nation Treatment

      1. Each Party shall accord to investors, investments and activities associated with such investments by investors of the other Party treatment no less favourable than that accorded, in like circumstances, to the investments and associated activities by the investors of any third country with respect to admission, expansion, management, conduct, operation, maintenance, use, enjoyment and disposal.

      2. For greater certainty, the obligation in this Article does not encompass a requirement to extend to investors of the other Party dispute resolution procedures other than those set out in this Chapter.

      3. Notwithstanding paragraph 1, the Parties reserve the right to adopt or maintain any measure that accords differential treatment to third countries under any free trade agreement or multilateral international agreement in force or signed prior to the date of entry into force of this Agreement.

      4. For greater certainty, paragraph 3 includes, in respect of agreements on the liberalisation of trade in goods or services or investment, any measures taken as part of a wider process of economic integration or trade liberalisation between the parties to such agreements.

      5. The Parties reserve the right to adopt or maintain any measure that accords differential treatment to third countries under any international agreement in force or signed after the date of entry into force of this Agreement involving:

      fisheries; and
      maritime matters.

      Article 140 Performance Requirements

      The Parties agree that the provisions of the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Investment Measures are incorporated mutatis mutandis into this Agreement and shall apply with respect to all investments falling within the scope of this Chapter.

      Article 141 Non-Conforming Measures

      1. Article 138 does not apply to:

      any existing non-conforming measures maintained within its territory;
      the continuation of any non-conforming measure referred to in subparagraph (a);
      an amendment to any non-conforming measure referred to in subparagraph (a) to the extent that the amendment does not increase the non-conformity of the measure, as it existed immediately before the amendment, with those obligations.

      2. The Parties will endeavour to progressively remove the non-conforming measures.

      3. Notwithstanding anything in paragraph 1, Article 138 shall not apply to any measure, which with respect to each Party, would not be within the scope of the national treatment obligations in any of that Party’s existing bilateral investment treaties.

      Article 142 Transfers

      1. Except in the circumstances envisaged in Article 202, each Party shall grant to investors of the other Party the free transfer of all payments relating to an investment, including more particularly:

      amounts necessary for establishing, maintaining or expanding the investment11;
      returns from investments, including profits, dividends, interests and other income;
      royalty payments, management fees, technical assistance and other fees;
      proceeds obtained from the total or partial sale or liquidation of investments, or amounts obtained from the reduction in investment capital;
      payments made pursuant to a loan agreement in connection with investments;
      amounts necessary for payments under a contract, including amounts necessary for repayment of loans, royalties and other payments resulting from licences, franchises, concessions and other similar rights;
      earnings and other remuneration of personnel engaged from abroad in connection with that investment;
      payments made pursuant to Articles 144 and 145; and
      payments arising out of the settlement of a dispute.

      2. The transfers referred to in paragraph 1 shall be made without delay in a freely convertible currency and at the prevailing market rate of exchange applicable within the Party accepting the investments on the date of transfer. In the event that the market rate of exchange does not exist, the rate of exchange shall correspond to the cross rate obtained from those rates which would be applied by the International Monetary Fund on the date of payment for conversions of the currencies concerned into Special Drawing Rights.

      3. In the case of China, the obligations in paragraph 1 shall apply provided that the transfer shall comply with the relevant formalities stipulated by the present laws and regulations of China relating to exchange control provided that:

      these formalities shall not be used as a means of avoiding China’s commitments or obligations under this Agreement;
      in this respect, China shall accord to investors of New Zealand treatment no less favourable than it accords to investors of any third country;
      the formalities shall be effected within such period as is normally required for the completion of transfer formalities. The said period shall commence on the day on which the relevant request has been submitted to the relevant foreign exchange administration with full and authentic documentation and information and may on no account exceed 60 days;
      transfer formalities relating to an investment shall in no case be made more restrictive than formalities required at the time when the original investment was made; and
      to the extent that these formalities are no longer required according to the relevant laws of China, Article 142 shall apply without restrictions.

      4. Notwithstanding paragraphs 1 and 2, a Party may prevent a transfer through the equitable, non-discriminatory and good faith application of its laws relating to:

      bankruptcy, insolvency, or the protection of the rights of creditors;
      issuing, trading or dealing in securities, futures or derivatives;
      criminal or penal offences;
      financial reporting or record keeping of transfers when necessary to assist law enforcement or financial regulatory authorities; or
      ensuring compliance with orders or judgments in judicial or administrative proceedings.

      5. Nothing in paragraph 3 shall affect the free transfer of compensation paid under Articles 144 and 145.

      6. Neither Party may require its investors to transfer or penalize its investors that fail to transfer the income, earnings, profits or other amounts derived from or attributable to investments in the territory of the other Party.

      7. In the case of China, the obligations in paragraph 6 apply only to the extent allowed by the relevant laws and regulations of China relating to exchange control, provided that paragraph 6 shall apply without restrictions to the extent that these laws and regulations no longer apply under China’s law.

      Article 143 Fair and Equitable Treatment

      1. Investments of investors of each Party shall at all times be accorded fair and equitable treatment and shall enjoy the full protection and security in the territory of the other Party in accordance with commonly accepted rules of international law.

      2. Fair and equitable treatment includes the obligation to ensure that, having regard to general principles of law, investors are not denied justice or treated unfairly or inequitably in any legal or administrative proceeding affecting the investments of the investor.

      3. Full protection and security requires each Party to take such measures as may be reasonably necessary in the exercise of its authority to ensure the protection and security of the investment.

      4. Neither Party shall take any unreasonable or discriminatory measures against the management, maintenance, use, enjoyment and disposal of the investments by the investors of the other Party.

      5. A violation of any other article of this Chapter does not establish that there has been a violation of this Article.

      Offering shares/assets like electricity companies for sale in NZ should according to this not disadvantage any investors from Mainland China, because according to the China NZ FTA they are supposed to be treated in the same way as investors in NZ.

      Any feedback on this would be welcome! H.C.

      • Colonial Viper 6.1.1

        Lots on the protection of the rights of the foreign “investors” and fuck all on the protection of the rights of non-investor “citizens”.

        In other words a fancy document written by investors gifting each another lots of protections and benefits, and giving the citizens and the government very few protections and benefits.

        What a farce.

        • HC 6.1.1.1

          Also have a look at a letter or official statement that was agreed upon in addition to the FTA between Mainland China and NZ. This is for entry of professionals from Mainland China to NZ to be able to work here. It is in a sense OK, but presuming that the NZ signer of it also signed the FTA, we have a bit of a problem.

          http://www.chinafta.govt.nz/1-The-agreement/2-Text-of-the-agreement/20-Annexes/0-downloads/skilled-workers-side-letter.pdf

        • HC 6.1.1.2

          CV – It is the lack of response here, the repeated hypocrisy I have experienced with Labour, the denial of past mistakes, past wrongdoings, the arrogance of always being right, the failure to listen to the really poor, namely beneficiaries, the lack of defence of the poor and downtrodden and cheated in this society, the hesitation to do bring about the necessary revolution we need in our economy, society, technological and environmental development, why I WOULD NEVER EVER VOTE LABOUR AGAIN!

          I did this a few times in the past, but my vote will go somewhere else for sure. And the developments in other comparable countries proves that new parties or formerly fringe parties will become stronger and more reliable parties, which will change the political landscape (also in NZ) very, very profoundly.

          I will welcome that day we get rid of lies, power hunger, the stuffly old and rotten “old boys” or “old sister’s network”.

          Get this country turned inside out and rebuilt from scratch, maybe even join joint ventures with some progressive companies to establish a sustainable, progressive, environmentally friendly and socially more cohesive society than we have had for nearly 3 decades now.

          I am very frustrated, angry and looking forward for REAL change. That is where I come from, and if this rocks the atmosphere on this website and blog, the better so, as it is exactly what NZ needs.

  7. Very good to see that Labour have exploited the obvious contradiction in the National Party’s stance on this – as I urged them to do here.

    The idea that a 49% sell-off of shares maintains the level of decision-making control the government currently enjoys is just rubbish. Having John Key sing this toxic lullaby into the public’s moist little ears is almost too much to bear.

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    Occasionally it is small projects that can have a lot of impact on people’s PT experience. With the ever growing number of people working near Victoria Park, an upgrade to the bus stops on Fanshawe St along with improvements to the… ...
    2 days ago
  • An abuse of the Speaker’s chair
    Last week NewsHub revealed leaked MPI reports which showed that MPI had been turning a blind eye to widespread criminal behaviour in the fishing industry. Today was the first day of Parliament since those revelations, and given their seriousness, it… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • An abuse of the Speaker’s chair
    Last week NewsHub revealed leaked MPI reports which showed that MPI had been turning a blind eye to widespread criminal behaviour in the fishing industry. Today was the first day of Parliament since those revelations, and given their seriousness, it… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Punakaiki Fund invests in Populate
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    Lance WiggsBy Lance Wiggs
    2 days ago
  • A piece of gratis media advice for Hilary Clinton
      Here’s some free media advice for Hilary Clinton now just trailing Donald Trump in the polls: Stop smiling and waving to “people you recognise” in the crowd. It’s insulting to everyone else, looks (and may well be) dishonest… ...
    2 days ago
  • A piece of gratis media advice for Hilary Clinton
      Here’s some free media advice for Hilary Clinton now just trailing Donald Trump in the polls: Stop smiling and waving to “people you recognise” in the crowd. It’s insulting to everyone else, looks (and may well be) dishonest… ...
    2 days ago
  • The Nuit Debout revolt in France: let the gems sparkle. . .
    by Denis Godard The movement of occupation of squares in France is [over] two weeks old. [1] Its evolution is difficult to predict, because it is open to many unforeseen events, even though its roots are deep. At this point… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Open Government: Unilateral
    Back in April, State Services Minister Paula Bennett announced in an answer to a Parlaimentary written question that we were consulting the Open Government Secretariat about an extension to the deadline for submitting our action plan:While New Zealand's second Open… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Open Government: Unilateral
    Back in April, State Services Minister Paula Bennett announced in an answer to a Parlaimentary written question that we were consulting the Open Government Secretariat about an extension to the deadline for submitting our action plan:While New Zealand's second Open… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    frogblogBy Marama Davidson
    2 days ago
  • Free the Wicklow 2
    Protests around the imprisonment of these two activists are taking place around Ireland and also in Britain.  Anyone fancy organising something at the Irish embassy in Wellington  There is also an Irish consulate in Auckland. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • DIY Touring The World: New Zealand
    New Zealand has a small population, few places to play and not much money for touring bands - but you can’t beat the beautiful landscapes, hidden gem venues and fantastic audiences. Music impresario Ian Jorgensen has been touring bands… ...
    2 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    A mass government house-building programme is a favourite policy of the left for solving the Auckland housing crisis. Use cheap government capital, build affordable, energy-efficient homes, mass produce them to get efficiencies of scale, and get people back into owning… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    A mass government house-building programme is a favourite policy of the left for solving the Auckland housing crisis. Use cheap government capital, build affordable, energy-efficient homes, mass produce them to get efficiencies of scale, and get people back into owning… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Protected: Tributes to Dame Margaret Sparrow
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    ALRANZBy ALRANZ
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand and New Zealand
    There’s a 2009 sci-fi novel by China Miéville called The City and the City. The action takes place in two separate cities which overlap each other geographically, but the denizens of each city is compelled to ‘Unsee’ things they see happening in… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand and New Zealand
    There’s a 2009 sci-fi novel by China Miéville called The City and the City. The action takes place in two separate cities which overlap each other geographically, but the denizens of each city is compelled to ‘Unsee’ things they see happening in… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • Breaking free from fossil fuels – the risk we take is not taking action
    Last week, #BreakFree2016 wrapped up across the globe. Greenpeace joined with many inspiring organisations in a global wave of peaceful actions that lasted for 12 days and took place across six continents to target the world’s most dangerous fossil fuel projects.In places… ...
    2 days ago
  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    2 days ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    2 days ago
  • Tinder and 3nder are officially at war
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    2 days ago
  • Weekly Listening: Die Antwoord, Joey Purp, King Kapisi and more
    A showcase of some of the best new music releases from the past week.   Joey Purp - GIRLS @ Feat. Chance The Rapper This track might be the catchiest three minutes and 32 seconds to hit your ears… ...
    2 days ago
  • Some big news, for me
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    GrumpollieBy Andrew
    2 days ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    2 days ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    frogblogBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    2 days ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    2 days ago

  • Minister won’t fess up on wrong figures
    The Minister of Health was caught out telling porkies in Parliament today when he was asked about the number of people getting access to mental health and addiction services, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. ...
    18 hours ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    18 hours ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    18 hours ago
  • Scrambled announcement policy on the hoof
    Paula Bennett’s scrambled desperate announcement that she will pay homeless people to move to the regions is just the latest evidence of the disarray this Government’s housing policy is in, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This is policy… ...
    19 hours ago
  • Police Minister admits resolution rates fall short of expectation
    Police Minister Judith Collins has admitted in Parliament current burglary resolution rates are not meeting the expectations of our communities, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash “Out of 284 police stations in New Zealand in 2015, 24 stations recorded zero… ...
    20 hours ago
  • Mojo Mathers: A better deal for animals in Budget 2016
    Currently we are failing animals in NZ. On the face of it farmed and domestic animals in this country have strong legal protection from abuse, cruelty and neglect. In reality it seems that only the very worst, most extreme cases… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    20 hours ago
  • Metiria Turei: What we need from Budget 2016
    Every family deserves a warm decent home.  Everyone believes that. This housing crisis is just the latest consequence of a Government who puts the interests of the few wealthy people above the needs of NZ families.  Families are doing it… ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei
    22 hours ago
  • Dairy exports fall of 11%: Budget action on diversification needed
    Dairy exports have fallen 11 per cent compared to this time last year, a fall of almost $1.5b, showing the Government must take clear action on diversifying the economy in tomorrow’s Budget, says Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David… ...
    22 hours ago
  • Investors driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland
    Investors cashing in on skyrocketing Auckland house prices are driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland and causing homeownership rates in some of our poorest suburbs to plummet, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New analysis shows… ...
    1 day ago
  • Budget must deliver on paid parental leave
    Budget 2016 must deliver 26 weeks paid parental leave by April 2018 – anything less will be short-changing families, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “My Bill which is before Parliament this afternoon has majority support and does just that. I… ...
    1 day ago
  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    2 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    2 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    2 days ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 days ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    2 days ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 days ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    3 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    3 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    4 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    5 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    6 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    6 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    6 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    6 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    6 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    6 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    6 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    6 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    7 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    7 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    7 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    7 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    7 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    1 week ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 week ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    1 week ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago

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