English: dodgy asset sales figures

Written By: - Date published: 4:19 pm, June 9th, 2011 - 15 comments
Categories: bill english, david cunliffe, privatisation - Tags:

While English seeks to pay for prisons by selling our assets – like selling your house to pay for your car (which you’re going to let someone else drive…) – it appears he’s still fiddling the figures to make things add up.

As David Cunliffe pointed out in the house today, he’s included the proceeds of the asset sales in his budget forecasts, but he hasn’t included either the cost of the sale ($600 million?) or the lost dividends (~$300 million / year?) in his budget forecasts.

The sales just don’t make economic sense, even before you get on to protecting your strategic assets…

15 comments on “English: dodgy asset sales figures”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    Ouch, that has to be pretty embarrassing.

  2. tc 2

    No worries Blinglish will just raise the sale proceeds by a few more billion…….easy as when you’ve departed from reality as far as you have with this shiny finance company brochure budget what’s a little more gonna hurt.

    • ZeeBop 2.1

      Worse, English by announcing he will sell, sell, sell, and the world is awash with cash, then
      lots of foreign investors seek NZ dollars awaiting the sale. This forces the NZ dollar up!
      And add salt to the injury, National then borrows (more than required) more to assist
      foreign investors on the other side of the currency trade. So the effect of borrowing is to help foreigners buy assets!!!

      Now if I were an exporter, I’d vote Labour and all that cash will have to be sold back for hard currency. Vote National however and watch another part of the economy go overseas to absent investor landlords. Whichever way NZ currency traders will do well by all the market movements, wonder whose running the show.

  3. Pascal's bookie 3

    Are there Public Finance Act issues here?

    • I think so PB.
      Section 26U of the Public Finance Act 1989 states
      “If the fiscal implications of Government decisions and other circumstances … can be quantified for particular years with reasonable certainty by the day on which the forecast financial statements are finalised, the quantified fiscal implications of those Government decisions and other circumstances must be included in the forecast financial statements.”
      They seem to be fairly easily quantified so I wonder why they were not included.

  4. Lovely sucker question from David.  Get Blinglish to quote the smaller figure and then point out that for another purpose he had used a larger figure.  Blinglish’s response was embarassing.

  5. Bunji 5

    David Cunliffe on English’s responses in the House:

    “His figures are sadly unreliable. Yesterday he asserted that SOEs had paid the government $350 million in dividends last year. In fact, the figure was $831 million, and Bill English can’t explain the half billion dollar discrepancy between his spin and the facts…
    “In short, Mr English has booked the full value of selling assets he has no mandate to sell while failing to properly account for the cost of those sales in lost dividends, and he has no excuse for this.
    “This is another dent in the credibility of National’s Budget, which also relies on $1 billion of savings from unspecified public service cuts, Treasury projections of tax revenue that are $4 billion higher than IRD’s projections, and rosy growth forecasts like those he made in his past two budgets, and which failed to eventuate.”

    • Pascal's bookie 5.1

      S’allright, when the big hole appears he will have a mandate to fill it by selling the other 51% of our shit. Coz it’s an emergency! and whocoodanode? and coz he sez so that’s why.

    • Deadly_NZ 5.2

      As hard as it is to say but the best thing would be a credit rating downgrade by Standard and Poors on Blinglishes watch. How would he spin that????

  6. Peter 6

    As Rod Oram says the most ill conceived Budget that he has ever read. (Nine to Noon)

  7. Lazy Susan 7

    Rod Oram et al recognise that Blinglish’s clueless budget is an ideologically driven fiscal mess. No plan, no logic, no ideas – all hallmarks of this hopeless government.

    The average swing voter has no idea what is going on here. If, and I believe it is still a big if, this government wins a second term the country will be set on a course that will take it well over decade to recover from. New Zealanders will look back at this period and wonder how they ever allowed such a disaster to happen. The answer of course is a lazy and compliant media combined with a lazy and selfish electorate. I despair that my country has come to this.

  8. deservingpoor 8

    This is sounding more and more like Enron every day.
    I agree that it will take a decade or more to sort out if NACT get a second term, it’ll probably take a decade to sort out now.

    Unfortunately we all know what will happen in year nine. The NZ public will decide it’s someone else’s turn at back yard cricket and vote these theiving bastards back in again regardless of their policies just because “its time for a change.”

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