web analytics

Coated in privatisation pixie dust

Written By: - Date published: 5:13 pm, July 25th, 2009 - 28 comments
Categories: assets, privatisation - Tags:

I like Colin Espiner’s writing. He’s got he best of the journo blogs. He’s focussed on issues rather than politicking. But does he ever drop some clangers – saying the Chief Justice could be fired, confusing numbers on the dole with the number who are unemployed, saying the Prime Minister can’t affect wages, and this:

Actually, I think selling or part-privatising Meridian is a splendid idea. It would be a great addition to the stock exchange, which badly needs some new blue-chip listings. And everyone who moans about the obscene profits the company makes and the size of their power bill could do something about it.

Buy some shares. Not only would that put some of Meridian’s profits in your own pocket, but as a shareholder you could go along to Meridian’s AGM and give the directors what-for once a year. Brilliant.

1) Why does the stock exchange ‘need’ new blue-chip listings? We are told all the time by people with a financial interest in privatisation that it will ‘help the stock market’ but how? What good does that do the stock-market (apart from the owners of the stock-market who get more commissions)? More importantly, what good does it do for the wider economy, whether of not it helps the stock-market? In reality, doesn’t floating more huge companies into a relatively small market just mean that we won’t get a good price and the value of other shares will drop too?
 
2) Right now, I can do something (small) about Meridian’s prices, I can complain to my MP and the shareholding minister. My voice is worth as much as anyone’s. If it’s privatised, only shareholders will have a voice and that will be determined by their size. In reality, there will be one or two, probably foreign, owners and if you can afford the shares and turn up to the AGM you can yell all you like, you’ll just be ignored.
 
3) Right now, the profits that Meridian earns on my power bill come back to me and my community. They pay a dividend, that dividend pays for government expenditure on schools, hospitals, roads etc etc etc. Sell the thing, for what is bound to be a bad price (when did we ever get a good price for a privatisation?) and the profits will flow overseas while we have to cut services or find revenue from other sources.

4) Name a privatised company that has worked well. They’re rare as hen’s teeth. Why? Because most of them are in some kind of monoploy or near monoploy position. The natural inclination of a company in that position is to charge high prices, asset strip, make mega profits run the thing down, then demand a government bailout to prevent collapse.

I think that Colin’s quote shows the effectiveness of propaganda. There’s no actual argument that privatisation works for the reasons he claims. But when you hear the same endless mantra ‘privatisation is good, sharemarket needs depth, greater accountability, private pixies provide efficiency’ you start to believe it, you forget to question it.

28 comments on “Coated in privatisation pixie dust”

  1. Tim Ellis 1

    Why does the stock exchange ‘need’ new blue-chip listings? We are told all the time by people with a financial interest in privatisation that it will ‘help the stock market’ but how? What good does that do the stock-market

    Interesting question Marty. It’s generally accepted that for any market to be viable, they need liquidity. They need a lot of investors constantly trading shares, investors with access to capital to trade, and a wide range of instruments to trade in. In short it needs critical mass. The ASX, which isn’t very large by world standards, is fifty times the size of the NZX.

    What does critical mass attract? Investors. More listings. Greater liquidity. More trades. Viable investment options other than residential property.

    More big listings would be good for New Zealand markets, and good for New Zealand investors.

    • RedLogix 1.1

      More big listings would be good for New Zealand markets, and good for New Zealand investors.

      Happy then for Meridian listings to be restricted to NZ resident investors only?

      • Tim Ellis 1.1.1

        Red, I don’t see the point in that. Resident and non-resident shareholders can already trade in electricity generation, through Contact shares. If there isn’t access to foreign capital then it wouldn’t enhance the liquidity of the sharemarket very much.

        It is quite common for electricity generators to offer unsecured capital instruments to New Zealand and non-resident investors. Yes, even those generators that are SOEs. In that respect the sharemarket really is only a capital-raising instrument. I don’t hear shrieks of privatisation every time Meridian offers unsecured notes to investors.

        • RedLogix 1.1.1.1

          If there isn’t access to foreign capital then it wouldn’t enhance the liquidity of the sharemarket very much.

          Well unless you are imagining that there is some means by which resident shareholders have an advantage over non-resident shareholders, then your claim ‘and good for New Zealand investors’ is pretty very much diluted.

          I don’t hear shrieks of privatisation every time Meridian offers unsecured notes to investors.

          Not unusual for public entities to raise capital in all sorts of ways, but ‘unsecured notes’ are quite different to shares that confer ownership. Indeed if one shareholder gains enough shares, they can control the company; something no amount of ‘unsecured notes’ will achieve.

        • stormspiral 1.1.1.2

          ‘I don’t hear shrieks of privatisation every time Meridian offers unsecured notes to investors.’

          No. You wouldn’t hear a thing, Tim. Most electricity and other consumers wouldn’t know one end of a sharemarket from another.

          Also, precisely what percentage of traders in NZ are represented on the sharemarket? 20? 25%?

          Seems like disproportionate power in the hands of a minority.

          Yes. I know more people than that invest in shares, but no way is this a majority.

          So why the bowed heads and hands raised in worship of what the sharemarket does? I’m talking logic here; not deep economic theory. And it is theory; not hard science.

          And it isn’t essential for NZ to follow overseas trends as far as we do. Certainly export sales are important, and what we spend overseas; in fact they are the vital ingredients, I’d have thought. As for exchange rates and such. Just who are they important to? other than the sharemarket?

          Catch 22. Just not logical.

          • Tim Ellis 1.1.1.2.1

            Yes. I know more people than that invest in shares, but no way is this a majority.

            So why the bowed heads and hands raised in worship of what the sharemarket does? I’m talking logic here; not deep economic theory. And it is theory; not hard science.

            No, I’m not raising my hands in worship of what the sharemarket does. I don’t personally invest in individual shares in the NZ sharemarket. It is too small and lacks liquidity. The reason why there aren’t many more New Zealand shareholders in the market is because there aren’t adequate levels of liquidity or stocks to make it worthwhile. That’s the whole point. If you raise liquidity levels and increase stocks and open up capital to more investors, more people will invest.

            Most New Zealanders have a lot of their savings and capital tied up either in their own homes or if they have surplus capital in investment property. Only a small number invest in shares and other investment instruments. As an economy we need real liquidity in productive assets.

            Why is a liquid market important? Because a liquid market is dynamic and innovative. It provides capital to invest in productive businesses. Productive businesses with access to easy capital creates economic growth and jobs.

            Investors receiving an economic return from productive assets become much more financially literate.

            • Pascal's bookie 1.1.1.2.1.1

              “Why is a liquid market important? Because a liquid market is dynamic and innovative. It provides capital to invest in productive businesses.”

              http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/24/business/24trading.html?_r=2&partner=rss&emc=rss

            • BLiP 1.1.1.2.1.2

              Far out – that’s spooky! Who in their right mind would trust the infrastructure of the nation to the manipulators of the stock market!

            • stormspiral 1.1.1.2.1.3

              Really?

              Where is your hard evidence for your statements about market liquidity?

              You know what you are saying is simply based on theory, on what you learned at varsity or wherever. And that doesn’t make you accurate nor claircoyant.

            • RedLogix 1.1.1.2.1.4

              PB.

              Yeah I read that NYT article and shook my head.

              I always thought that ‘high frequency’ automated trading was sort of dodgy, but these supercomputers running ultra-high speed access directly into the SE systems… is really just a licence to steal from ordinary investors.

              Really it has to be the end of the market. Why any sane person would invest so much as one red cent into such a corrupt den of thieves is completely beyond me.

            • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.2.1.5

              Far out that’s spooky! Who in their right mind would trust the infrastructure of the nation to the manipulators of the stock market!

              Only the delusional BLiP, only the delusional. The people who think that buying a share and then selling it for more has actually produced something.

    • Marty G 1.2

      So, we should sell one of our largest assets to some foreign company so that a few of the shares can be traded on our stockmarket? And that’s some how meant to make us better off as a country?

      Sounds like it would be good for the select few who can afford to get in at the listing then sell off at a profit to large foreign owners when the price leaps up (as it did with Contact, Auckland Airport). Don’t see any advantage for the country.

      • Tim Ellis 1.2.1

        No I don’t think anybody’s really seriously suggesting that Marty. But it would be good if the Super Fund had more large investment vehicles locally in New Zealand to invest in, for example, instead of having to invest off shore all the time because there aren’t the investment vehicles locally. Likewise with other large mutual funds.

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 1.3

      If NZ’s no 1 economic problem is our current account deficit (does any economist dispute this?), how could sending profits offshore be justified?
      NZ’s trade deficit has been holding up pretty well over the past year or so. What is pushing up our current account are profits repatriated off shore.

  2. stormspiral 2

    ‘…generally accepted’. Tim, doesn’t mean it’s true.

    Seems to me that ‘critical mass’ could just as easily attract rogues and schills, robbers and cheats aka our electricity industry, big banks. It depends how you play with the numbers. ‘Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics’, and all that.

    • Tim Ellis 2.1

      Interesting, Storm. If you think the “rogues and schills” are more common at Contact Energy than at Meridian or Mighty River or Genesis, or more common at TV3 than TVNZ, then you need to cut down on your pessimism pills.

      • Pascal's bookie 2.1.1

        It’s an unknowable Tim. In the private sector there is much less transparency than there is in the public sector for starters.

        Large bureaucracies have their benefits and their downsides. The public sector ones get a pretty good workout and are watched quite closely, all things considered.

        The large private sector ones are much less accountable if you look at it properly, particularly listed companies, ironically enough. Institutional investors dominate the shareholdings, and those investors themselves are controlled by their bureaucrats. Most of the ‘owners’ of the shares in a unit trust don’t even know what they own. The notion of shareholder control through the AGM is quaint. It’s the ‘management’ that control the company and their own remuneration and ability to exert further control, these bureaucrats, (and don’t kid yourself that management is anything but), have captured their domains far more than their public sector equivalents.

        Given that, where would you predict “rogues and schills’ to hunt?

        You should read J.K. Galbraith’s “The Economics of innocent fraud”. Short and cheap, there’s no excuse, and he might just retune those rose tinted glasses a bit..

      • stormspiral 2.1.2

        You know I never said that. and if I had meant it I would have said it clearly. As I’m sure you do, I believe that the rogues et al are divided among the whole of society.

        No no, Tim. Critique and comment are part of any discourse, and need not be pessimistic. But I have been speaking about things that need to be said.

        I’m sorry if I upset your economics mind. Sad that you haven’t chosen to comment on the points I have raised re economies and economists.

        However answering comment and question by denigrating the the comment author is hardly constructive economics..

        Finally, it’s about timw economists started to really question what they say and their methodology, and their accuracy based on unfudged results.

  3. Draco T Bastard 3

    The stock market, like any capitalist endeavor, is delusional. It doesn’t have correct prices and it doesn’t deliver value to the community. It’s just another bubble waiting to burst.

    http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com/2009/07/anti-ecology-of-money.html

    Anti-Spam: difficultys – yeah, it seems it can’t spell

  4. stormspiral 4

    It seems so self-evident. Why do you think I’ve called JK a gambler?

  5. Galeandra 5

    stormspiral says ‘It seems so self-evident. Why do you think I’ve called JK a gambler?’

    Interesting too to hear Key on Friday ( or was it Tweedledee, Mr Spin-glish?) espousing the relaxation of foreign investment control as a way of bridging the capital shortage we apparently suffer from. It seems unlikely to me that selling assets will necessarily produce genuine investment in development of the asset, if the past is any indication.

    Fay Richwhite’s ownership of NZ Rail, for example, and the follow-up by Toll; Telecom had capital invested but a lot more stripped out in the form of repatriated profit. How does our electricity generation &distribution network as it is today stack up against the decades when it ran as a purely state owned investment?

    What I really liked about Contact for example was
    a) paying for the initial state development through my taxes;
    b) paying again for the assets through price increases when the SOE’s had to generate profit on the assets to repay the “purchase price” and
    c) paying yet again for the asset when private owners finally took over and profits covered purchase price.

    It’s not a cheerful prospect for the average taxpayer when he looks back at all the stuff he helped pay for so that others could ‘buy’ it from him.

    That aside, I do agree that we need mechanisms to raise capital for enterprise development and NZX is at least an alternative to “investing” in houses.
    But
    I’d be concerned to see minority investors shoved out by large players once their holdings fell below a particular threshold. This has happened often enough in the past ( as per Skellerup, for example).

    I’d like NannyState to protect NZ enterprise and ingenuity against the rapacity of large foreign capital conglomerates with some sort of kiwi share mechanism. I guess that suggestion would make all the monetarists and pure marketeers howl.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      Foreign investment hurts the local economy. That includes NZ investment in other, smaller, economies.

      These are the graphs that prove it. It’s interesting. Global economy is up, rich economy financial capital is up, rich economy wages are down, small economy financial capital is down and small economy wages are up. In theory.

      Fisher and Paykel will probably tell you that the small economies (NZ) wages are down as well as the financial capital.

      • Tim Ellis 5.1.1

        DTB, again those graphs don’t prove anything of the sort. You have found some graphs that are consistent with your hypothesis, but they don’t prove your hypohesis because there you haven’t established causation.

        The general rule is that no underdeveloped nation has acheived developed status in modern economic history without access to foreign capital. The only exceptions have been when underdeveloped nations strike an oil field. We don’t have many oil fields.

        Secondly, if foreign investment is harmful to New Zealand, then isn’t New Zealand investment in foreign countries harmful to other countries’ economies? To be consistent shouldn’t you be arguing that New Zealand companies and crown organisations shouldn’t invest overseas? How do you feel about the Super Fund placing the large majority of its investment offshore?

        • RedLogix 5.1.1.1

          Again you are resorting to the “I don’t like the data, therefore I’m sticking my fingers in my ears” defence. What you really want to do is to shift the debate away from the discipline of hard facts to specualtive discussion where you can make any unprovable assertion you like.

          Draco has given you some information, from which he has drawn a strong and reasonable hypothesis. Now if you want to debate this with any credibility you will need to propose an alternative hypothesis (ie come up with some other ‘causation’ ) that fits the data.

        • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.2

          The graphs are a result of current economic theory explaining that foreign investment makes the global economy larger and therefore make everyone better off. The graphs also show that the smaller economy will be worse off though as it’s return to capital (profits) is reduced as they’re now repatriated back to the larger economy.

          The general rule is that no underdeveloped nation has acheived developed status in modern economic history without access to foreign capital.

          Perhaps because they weren’t given a chance. As I said in another thread – those communities weren’t poor until we screwed things up for them.

          Secondly, if foreign investment is harmful to New Zealand, then isn’t New Zealand investment in foreign countries harmful to other countries’ economies?

          Yes Tim, it is and yes, I think NZ companies and crown organizations should be prevented from investing overseas.

    • Tim Ellis 5.2

      Galeandra, if a kiwishare mechanism can be established that doesn’t diminish companies’ access to capital, invites more retail investors into the market and increases New Zealanders’ financial literacy and investment options, I’m all for it.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Greens work to secure inquiry into Wild West student accommodation sector
    The Green Party has begun the process for a Select Committee inquiry into student accommodation, which has been exposed during COVID-19 as an under-regulated sector that straddles students with unfair debt. ...
    7 hours ago
  • New Zealand joins global search for COVID-19 vaccine
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon Megan Woods, Minister of Research, Science and Innovation Hon Dr David Clark, Minister of Health Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods,  and Health Minister David Clark today announced a COVID-19 vaccine strategy, ...
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2020: Five things to know
    Budget 2020 is about rebuilding together, supporting jobs, getting business moving and the books back into the black. It’s an integral part of our COVID-19 economic response, and our plan to grow our economy and get New Zealand moving again. Here’s a quick look at the five top things you ...
    2 days ago
  • Coalition Government approves essential upgrades on Ōhakea Air Base
    The Coalition Government has approved $206 million in essential upgrades at Ōhakea Air Base.  Defence Minister Ron Mark said the money would be spent on improving old infrastructure. He said safety issues would be addressed, as well as upgrades to taxiways, accommodation and fresh, storm and waste water systems. "This ...
    6 days ago
  • Attributable to the Rt Hon Winston Peters
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First “I am not persisting with this case just for myself, but for all people who have had their privacy breached. Privacy of information is a cornerstone of our country’s democracy. Without it our society truly faces a bleak future. We now ...
    1 week ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones moves to protect sawmills
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones has introduced a Bill to Parliament that he says will "force more transparency, integrity and respect" for the domestic wood-processing sector through the registration of log traders and practice standards. The Forests (Regulation of Log Traders and Forestry Advisers) Amendment Bill had its first reading in ...
    1 week ago
  • Green MP joins international call to cancel developing countries’ debt
    Green MP Golriz Ghahraman is joining over 300 lawmakers from around the world in calling on the big banks and the IMF to forgive the debt of developing countries, in the wake of the COVID crisis. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Forestry Minister Shane Jones swipes back at billion trees critics
    Forestry Minister Shane Jones says concerns that carbon foresters are planting pine trees that will never be harvested are the result of "misinformation". "The billion tree strategy is an excellent idea, unfortunately from time to time it's tainted by misinformation spread by the National Party or their grandees, hiding in scattered ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget boost for refugee families a win for compassion
    The Green Party welcomes funding in the budget to reunite more refugees with their families, ensuring they have the best chance at a new life in Aotearoa New Zealand. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How Budget 2020 is supporting jobs
    This year’s Budget is about rebuilding New Zealand together in the face of COVID-19. Jobs are central to how we’re going to do that.There’s a lot of targeted investment for employment in this year’s Budget, with announcements on creating new jobs, training people for the jobs we have, and supporting ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters says China didn’t want NZ to go into lockdown
    Speaking to Stuff's Coronavirus NZ podcast, Foreign Minister Winston Peters revealed China tried to dissuade New Zealand from going into lockdown. “Without speaking out of turn, they wanted a discussion as to why we were doing it, because they thought it was an overreaction,” Mr Peters told Stuff’s Coronavirus NZ podcast. He also ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Changes made to Overseas Investment Act to protect New Zealand assets
    The Coalition Government is making changes to the Overseas Investment Act to ensure New Zealand assets don't fall into the hands of foreign ownership in the economic aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Associate Minister of Finance David Parker announced the Act will be amended to bring forward a national interest ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters: Trans-Tasman bubble to help tourism industry make swift recovery
    A quick start to a trans-Tasman bubble could see the tourism industry make a swift recovery, according to Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters. "I believe tourism will turn around dramatically faster than people think," Mr Peters told reporters after Thursday's Budget. "Why? Because I think the Tasman bubble is [going ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Rt. Hon Winston Peters: Budget Speech
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First   Please check against delivery https://vimeo.com/418303651 Budget 2020: Jobs, Business and Balance   Introduction Acknowledgements to all Cabinet colleagues, and party ministers Tracey Martin, Shane Jones and Ron Mark, Under-Secretary Fletcher Tabuteau and to caucus colleagues. Thank you for your support, your ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Jacinda Ardern’s 2020 Budget Speech
    Read Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's Budget 2020 Speech. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget 2020: Next steps to end family and sexual violence
    The 2020 Budget includes significant support to stabilise New Zealand’s family violence services, whose work has been shown to be so essential throughout the COVID-19 lockdown. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investment in housing gives more people access to the home they deserve
    The Green Party says huge new investment in public and transitional housing will get thousands more families into the warm, safe homes they deserve.  ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget 2020: Huge investment in green nature based jobs jump starts sustainable COVID recovery
    The Green Party says the $1.1 billion environmental investment in this year’s budget to create thousands of green jobs will help jump start a sustainable recovery from the COVID crisis. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Grant Robertson’s 2020 Budget Speech
    Read Minister of Finance Grant Robertson's Budget 2020 Speech. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters tells struggling migrant workers ‘you should probably go home’
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters said today the Coalition Government told foreigners at the start of the Covid-19 crisis that if their circumstances had changed dramatically, they should go home. "And 50,000 did," Mr Peters said. Official advice to Cabinet revealed there is potentially 380,000 foreigners and migrant workers in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First welcomes today’s Alert Level 2 announcement
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand First welcomes the decision today to go to Alert Level 2 from midnight Wednesday, says Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters. Alert Level 2 will mean a return to work for the vast majority of New Zealand’s businesses. A return ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nurses to be protected after amendment to First Responders Bill
    Nurses now look set to get more protection from violence at work, under a proposed new law. This after NZ First MP Darroch Ball's "Protection for First Responders Bill", which introduces a six-month minimum sentence for assaults on first responders, will now also cover emergency department healthcare workers. The ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nurses to get more protection, added to ‘First Responders’ legislation
    Darroch Ball MP, New Zealand First Law and Order Spokesperson An amendment to the ‘Protection of First Responders Bill’ is being tabled which will see emergency department healthcare workers included in the legislation. “During this COVID-19 crisis we have seen reports of violence and specifically increased incidents of spitting towards ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Shane Jones: Northland port could be economic haven
    Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones is breathing new life into the proposal to move Auckland's port to Whangārei to help in the economic recovery post Covid-19 pandemic. If New Zealand First was returned in the September general election, Minister Jones said a priority would be development of an "economic haven" at Northport, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF grant for Ventnor memorial
    The plan to build a memorial to the SS Ventnor, and those who were lost when it sank off the Hokianga coast in 1902, has been granted $100,000 from the Provincial Growth Fund. Originally planned for a site near Rāwene cemetery, the memorial will now be built at the new Manea ...
    3 weeks ago
  • 75th anniversary of V.E Day
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader Leader of New Zealand First, Rt Hon Winston Peters said: “Today is the 75th anniversary of VE Day – marking the end of World War II in Europe." Millions died in the six years of war, and families were torn apart. 75 years ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: Getting the job done
    From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, our Government has committed to providing calm, clear, and consistent communication, including regular press conference updates from the Prime Minister. While New Zealand is at Alert Level 3, we're making sure that New Zealanders are kept informed and up-to-date with all the latest ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters responds to Simon Bridges’ ‘my sweetheart’ comment
    New Zealand First leader Winston Peters spoke to The Country's Jamie Mackay. A day earlier, National Party leader Simon Bridges was on the radio show and referred to the Deputy Prime Minister as, "my sweetheart Winston". Mr Peters swiftly dismissed the question of whether Bridges had changed his mind about ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Historic pay equity settlement imminent for teacher aides
    The Ministry of Education and NZEI Te Riu Roa have agreed to settle the pay equity claim for teacher aides, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This will see more than 22,000 teacher aides, mostly women, being valued and paid fairly for the work they do. “Teacher aides are frontline ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • New Zealand and Singapore reaffirm ties
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong have marked the first anniversary of the New Zealand-Singapore Enhanced Partnership with a virtual Leaders’ Meeting today. The Enhanced Partnership, signed on 17 May 2019, provides the framework for cooperation across the four main areas of trade, defence and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • JOINT STATEMENT BY THE PRIME MINISTERS OF NEW ZEALAND AND THE REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE ON THE FIRST AN...
    On 17 May 2019, New Zealand and Singapore established an Enhanced Partnership to elevate our relations. The Enhanced Partnership – based on the four pillars of trade and economics, security and defence, science, technology and innovation, and people-to-people links – has seen the long-standing relationship between our countries strengthen over the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Government investment supports the acquisition of new Interislander ferries
    State-Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters has welcomed KiwiRail’s announcement that it is seeking a preferred shipyard to build two new rail-enabled ferries for the Cook Strait crossing. “This Government is committed to restoring rail to its rightful place in New Zealand. Bigger, better ships, with new technology are yet another ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Better protection for seabirds
    Better protection for seabirds is being put in place with a new National Plan of Action to reduce fishing-related captures, Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage announced today.   The National Plan of Action for Seabirds 2020 outlines our commitment to reduce fishing-related captures and associated seabird ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Milestone in cash flow support to SMEs
    Almost $1 billion in interest-free loans for small businesses More than 55,000 businesses have applied; 95% approved Average loan approx. $17,300 90% of applications from firms with ten or fewer staff A wide cross-section of businesses have applied, the most common are the construction industry, accommodation providers, professional firms, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Government protects kids as smoking in cars ban becomes law
    Thousands of children will have healthier lungs after the Government’s ban on smoking in cars with kids becomes law, says Associate Minister of Health Jenny Salesa. This comes after the third reading of Smoke-free Environments (Prohibiting Smoking in Motor Vehicles Carrying Children) Amendment Bill earlier today. “This law makes it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Parliament returns to a safe normal
    The special Epidemic Response Committee (ERC) has successfully concluded its role, Leader of the House Chris Hipkins said today. The committee was set up on 25 March by the agreement of Parliament to scrutinise the Government and its actions while keeping people safe during levels 4 and 3 of lockdown. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Foreign Minister makes four diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced four diplomatic appointments: New Zealand’s Ambassador to Belgium, High Commissioners to Nauru and Niue, and Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism. “As the world seeks to manage and then recover from COVID-19, our diplomatic and trade networks are more important than ever,” Mr Peters said. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Bill to counter violent extremism online
    New Zealanders will be better protected from online harm through a Bill introduced to Parliament today, says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin. “The internet brings many benefits to society but can also be used as a weapon to spread harmful and illegal content and that is what this legislation targets,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Mycoplasma bovis eradication reaches two year milestone in good shape
    New Zealand’s world-first plan to eradicate the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis is on track the latest technical data shows, says Agriculture and Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two years ago the Government, DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand and industry partners made a bold decision to go hard and commit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New payment to support Kiwis through COVID
    Further support for New Zealanders affected by 1-in-100 year global economic shock 12-week payment will support people searching for new work or retraining Work programme on employment insurance to support workers and businesses The Government today announced a new temporary payment to support New Zealanders who lose their jobs due ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • PGF reset helps regional economies
    The Provincial Growth Fund will play a vital role in New Zealand’s post-COVID-19 recovery by creating jobs in shorter timeframes through at least $600 million being refocused on projects with more immediate economic benefits, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The funding is comprised of repurposed Provincial Growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government exempts some home improvements from costly consents
    Government exempts some home improvements from costly consents Homeowners, builders and DIYers will soon have an easier time making basic home improvements as the Government scraps the need for consents for low-risk building work such as sleep-outs, sheds and carports – allowing the construction sector to fire back up quicker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Concern at introduction of national security legislation for Hong Kong
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says the New Zealand Government has reacted with concern at the introduction of legislation in China’s National People’s Congress relating to national security in Hong Kong.  “We have a strong interest in seeing confidence maintained in the ‘one country, two systems’ principle under which Hong ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Samoa Language Week theme is perfect for the post-COVID-19 journey
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, says the theme for the 2020 Samoa Language Week is a perfect fit for helping our Pacific communities cope with the unfolding COVID-19 crisis, and to prepare now for the journey ahead as New Zealand focuses on recovery plans and rebuilding New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Adult kakī/black stilt numbers soar
    A nearly 40-year programme to protect one of New Zealand’s most critically endangered birds is paying off, with a record number of adult kakī/black stilt recently recorded living in the wild, the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. “Thanks to the team effort involved in the Department of Conservation’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Waikato-Tainui settlement story launched on 25th anniversary of Treaty signing
    The story of the Waikato-Tainui Treaty process and its enduring impact on the community is being told with a five-part web story launched today on the 25th anniversary of settlement, announced Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “I am grateful to Waikato-Tainui for allowing us to help capture ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Taita College to benefit from $32 million school redevelopment
    Taita College in the Hutt Valley will be redeveloped to upgrade its ageing classrooms and leaky roofs, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. “The work is long overdue and will make a lasting difference to the school for generations to come,” Chris Hipkins said. “Too many of our schools are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Redeployment for workers in hard-hit regions
    The Government is allocating $36.72 million to projects in regions hard hit economically by COVID-19 to keep people working, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Projects in Hawke’s Bay, Northland, Rotorua and Queenstown will be funded from the Government’s $100 million worker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • $35m to build financial resilience for New Zealanders
    A $35m boost to financial capability service providers funded by MSD will help New Zealanders manage their money better both day to day and through periods of financial difficulty, announced Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “It’s always been our position to increase support to key groups experiencing or at risk ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New District Court Judge appointed
    Dunedin barrister Melinda Broek has been appointed as a District Court Judge with Family Court jurisdiction to be based in Rotorua, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Ms Broek has iwi affiliations to Ngai Tai. She commenced her employment in 1996 with Scholefield Cockroft Lloyd in Invercargill specialising in family and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • $206 million investment in upgrades at Ohakea Air Force Base
    The Coalition Government has approved a business case for $206 million in upgrades to critical infrastructure at Royal New Zealand Air Force Base Ohakea, with the first phase starting later this year, Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. The investment will be made in three phases over five years, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Review of CAA organisational culture released
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today released the Ministry of Transport’s review of the organisational culture at the Civil Aviation Authority. Phil Twyford says all employees are entitled to a safe work environment. “I commissioned this independent review due to the concerns I had about the culture within the CAA, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Board appointed at Stats NZ
    Ensuring that Stats NZ’s direction and strategy best supports government policy decisions will be a key focus for a new Governance Advisory Board announced today by the Minister for Statistics, James Shaw. The new Governance Advisory Board will provide strategic advice to Stats NZ to ensure it is meeting New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Principal Environment Judge
    Environment Judge David Kirkpatrick of Auckland has been appointed as the Principal Environment Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  Judge Kirkpatrick was appointed an Environment Judge in February 2014. From December 2013 to July 2016 he was Chair of the Auckland Unitary Plan Independent Hearings Panel. Prior to appointment he ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Digital connectivity boost for urban marae
    A programme to connect marae around the country to the internet has received $1.4 million to expand to include urban marae in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister Kris Faafoi and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. The funding for the Marae Connectivity Programme ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt increases assistance to drought-stricken Hawke’s Bay farmers
    The Government will provide $500,000 to the Hawke’s Bay Mayoral Drought Relief Fund to help farmers facing one of the worst droughts in living memory, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Yesterday afternoon I received a letter from Hawke's Bay's five local Government leaders asking me to contribute to the Fund. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Investment in New Zealand’s history
    Budget 2020 provides a major investment in New Zealand’s documentary heritage sector, with a commitment to leasing a new Archives Wellington facility and an increase in funding for Archives and National Library work. “Last year I released plans for a new Archives Wellington building – a purpose-built facility physically connected ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Driving prompt payments to small businesses
    Government Ministers are asking significant private enterprises to adopt prompt payment practices in line with the state sector, as a way to improve cashflow for small businesses. The Ministers of Finance, Small Business, Commerce and Consumer Affairs have written to more than 40 significant enterprises and banking industry representatives to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Rotorua tourist icon to be safeguarded
    Maori Arts and Crafts will continue to underpin the heart of the tourism sector says Minister for Maori Development Nanaia Mahuta.  “That’s why we are making a core investment of $7.6 million to Te Puia New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, over two years, as part of the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $14.7m for jobs training and education
    The Government is funding more pathways to jobs through training and education programmes in regional New Zealand to support the provinces’ recovery from the economic impacts of COVID-19, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Employment Minister Willie Jackson have announced. “New Zealand’s economic recovery will be largely driven by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Is it time to further recognise those who serve in our military?
     Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced the launch of a national conversation that aims to find out whether New Zealanders think there should be a formal agreement between service people, the Government, and the people of New Zealand. “This year marks the 75th anniversary of the end of World ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Paving the way for a fully qualified early learning workforce
    The Government’s drive to improve the quality of early childhood education (ECE) is taking another step forward with the reintroduction of a higher funding rate for services that employ fully qualified and registered teachers, Education Minister Chris Hipkins has announced. “Research shows that high-quality ECE can improve young people’s learning ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Sport Recovery Package announced
    The Sport and Recreation sector will receive a multi-million dollar boost as part of the COVID-19 response funded at Budget 2020.  Grant Robertson says the Sport and Recreation Sector contributes about $5 billion a year to New Zealand’s GDP and employs more than 53,000 people. “Sport plays a significant role ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Major boost in support for caregivers and children
    A major increase in funding and availability of support will improve the incomes and reduce the pressure on 14,000 caregivers looking after more than 22,000 children. Children’s Minister Tracey Martin says that caregivers – all those looking after someone else’s children both in and outside the state care system – ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Great Walks recovery on track for summer
    Vital conservation and visitor infrastructure destroyed by a severe flood event in Fiordland earlier this year is being rebuilt through a $13.7 million Budget 2020 investment, announced Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage.   “This investment will mean iconic Great Walks such as the Routeburn track and the full length of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori – Government partnership gives whānau a new housing deal
    The Government is investing  $40 million in a partnership with Māori to get more whānau into warm, dry and secure accommodation, Associate Minister for Housing (Māori Housing) Hon Nanaia Mahuta says.. “We are partnering with Māori and iwi to respond to the growing housing crisis in the wake of COVID-19. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders Safe In The Water
    Keeping New Zealanders safe in the water Our lifeguards and coastguards who keep New Zealanders safe in the water have been given a funding boost thanks to the 2020 Budget, Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector Poto Williams has announced. The water safety sector will receive $63 million over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Legal framework for COVID-19 Alert Level referred to select committee
    The COVID-19 Public Health Response Act 2020, which set a sound legal framework ahead of the move to Alert level 2, has been referred to a parliamentary select committee for review.  Attorney-General David Parker said the review of the operation of the COVID-19 specific law would be reported back to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago