web analytics

Govt not monitoring overseas investors

Written By: - Date published: 1:20 pm, April 16th, 2012 - 15 comments
Categories: overseas investment, privatisation - Tags:

The Right tells us that selling all our stuff and letting the profits flow offshore is great because we get foreign capital and knowledge flowing into the economy (apparently,we can’t just buy that stuff rather than permanently lose our wealth base).

The Government says 30% ($2b) of the shares sold under the asset sales programme will go to foreigners.

But does overseas investment actually provide the benefits it claims? Turns out, we don’t know because the government doesn’t monitor the outcomes.

Foreign investors who have bought large tracts of land agreed to meet a set of conditions in order to be given consent for their purchases.

But information released by Land Information Minister Maurice Williamson shows a decline in the number of investigations into suspected breaches of those consent conditions.

One investigation was conducted last year and none in 2010.

That’s despite the number of staff employed to monitor and investigate such breaches remaining constant.

Some purchases, including several blocks of Southland farm land sold to an Irish company, have never been actively monitored.

Three blocks of land amounting to more than 190ha were sold to Premier Dairies in 2009 on condition that the company created jobs, increased the processing of primary products and provided additional investment for development purposes.

The Overseas Investment Office has received four reports from Premier Dairies, as required under the consent process to prove continuing good character, but has conducted none of its own monitoring to ensure the company complied with the requirements.

Labour MP David Parker said answers provided by Mr Williamson to written parliamentary questions revealed there had been little, or no, monitoring of conditions following 15 land sales to foreign buyers.

That included the 2009 decisions to allow 108ha of land near Matamata to be sold to GH Westbury Pty Ltd, 22ha near Ashburton to Ger Beemsterboer (NZ) Ltd, and 788ha near Otorohanga to Honikiwi Holdings Ltd.

“I think it shows that, despite the rhetoric, the Government wants to encourage overseas investment in land rather than properly control it.”

There needed to be ongoing monitoring to ensure promises were being followed through on because conditions hadn’t been met in the past, Mr Parker said.

It was also topical with the OIO currently reconsidering a $210 million offer for the 16 Crafar farms by Chinese investors Shanghai Pengxin after the High Court overruled the original decision to accept the bid.

Mr Parker said there had previously been questions about the thoroughness of OIO compliance investigations but having no checks meant people could “gild the lily” and exaggerate in order to get approval.

It undermined the process and made the conditions a pretence rather than something New Zealanders could rely upon, he said.

“We don’t think there’s very often that there is a net benefit to the country … where they are approved on conditions it makes a nonsense of the system if no-one checks whether those conditions are being met.”

So, basically, the government doesn’t have a clue whether the grand promises made by foreign investors buying our land are actually being met. But it wants to keep selling our stuff anyway. Just more proof that this government is ideological and irrational.

15 comments on “Govt not monitoring overseas investors ”

  1. vto 1

    Nobody has shown how having foreign landlords is better.

    In fact, the reason we supposedly never have enough capital in this country is because most stuff has been owned by foreign landlords instead of us ffs.

    It doesn’t seem to have occurred to these fanatics that our capital base would expand if ownership was held by New Zealanders instead.

    Sometimes I think they don’t really think too much.

    • insider 1.1

      Yeah let’s have the Crafars back. Real Kiwis with a track record in running farms. Or Michael Fay. He’s one of us and he already owns a farm or two.

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.1

        Fucking Michael Fay is not a “Real Kiwi”

      • vto 1.1.2

        what’s your point insider ?

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.3

        NZ managers suck but selling off our assets doesn’t improve them or make us better off.

        • Colonial Viper

          yeah, they and the investment bankers involved can purchase another their bach, beamer and boat by taking a slice of the proceeds of the selloff as their fees.

        • Dv

          Just small point.
          WHO lent hime thw 200m?

          Overseas banks!

          • Draco T Bastard

            Who lent whom what?

            The Chinese have something like US$1 trillion in US bonds from selling the US cheap electronics and other stuff and nowhere to spend it because the US doesn’t allow China to buy hard assets and no longer makes anything the Chinese want or need. If the Chinese currency wasn’t pegged as a fraction of the US dollar the exchange rate would be the other way around.

            EDIT: Oh, you mean Michael Fay.

            • Dv

              Nope Crafar, sorry Draco from fist inside comment

            • Matt

              Oh, the US makes stuff the Chinese want and need, alas it it only available via espionage.

              edit: and of course, if the yuan were valued properly it would tank much of China’s export-driven economy overnight.

    • aerobubble 1.2

      without fair taxation on capital gains, i.e. matching taxation on capital gains that Autralians or Brits have, the distortion created would naturally favor those who can push the exchange rate high. How do they make their money, well there exporters of bulk primary produce, they recoup the necessary costs to keep their NZ operation turning over and keep the rest overseas. The capital desert is produced because the system is rigged so that it pays owners of production to target the capital gain. i.e. if you don’t tax fairly then the private sector will take the profit, and how does the capital gains farmers do that, by borrowing to avoid tax and pocketing the untaxed capital gain.

  2. Colonial Viper 2

    The global elite are just that – a transnational global elite. The last thing they want are pesky things like ‘governments’ and ‘citizens’ complicating their latest international investment strategy designed to pump wealth from hapless niave countries like us back to themselves.

  3. Tiger Mountain 3

    Well sounds similar to “90 day fire at will” in the labour market, substantially unmonitored by the very Govt. agency that claimed it was a good thing to do on behalf of new job entrants.

    Inflow and outflow of foreign capital; hello, heard of the “foreign account deficit”? ’casue that is what it is all about and likely even the dimmest observer will note that it is mainly outflow in the form of repatriated profits to overseas owned corporates.

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      Don’t worry about the foreign account deficit, English can always get more foreign currency in by simply borrowing it.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • New ACC Board members announced.
    The Minister for ACC is pleased to announce the appointment of three new members to join the Board of ACC on 1 February 2021. “All three bring diverse skills and experience to provide strong governance oversight to lead the direction of ACC” said Hon Carmel Sepuloni. Bella Takiari-Brame from Hamilton ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Economic boost for Southland marae
    The Government is investing $9 million to upgrade a significant community facility in Invercargill, creating economic stimulus and jobs, Infrastructure Minister Grant Robertson and Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene have announced.  The grant for Waihōpai Rūnaka Inc to make improvements to Murihiku Marae comes from the $3 billion set ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Celebrating the Entry Into Force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
    [Opening comments, welcome and thank you to Auckland University etc] It is a great pleasure to be here this afternoon to celebrate such an historic occasion - the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This is a moment many feared would never come, but ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Supporting disabled people to stay connected
    The Government is providing $3 million in one-off seed funding to help disabled people around New Zealand stay connected and access support in their communities, Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni announced today. The funding will allow disability service providers to develop digital and community-based solutions over the next two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Voluntary saliva testing offered to quarantine workers from Monday
    Border workers in quarantine facilities will be offered voluntary daily COVID-19 saliva tests in addition to their regular weekly testing, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. This additional option will be rolled out at the Jet Park Quarantine facility in Auckland starting on Monday 25 January, and then to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Next steps in firearms buy-back
    The next steps in the Government’s ambitious firearms reform programme to include a three-month buy-back have been announced by Police Minister Poto Williams today.  “The last buy-back and amnesty was unprecedented for New Zealand and was successful in collecting 60,297 firearms, modifying a further 5,630 firearms, and collecting 299,837 prohibited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature projects target iconic ecosystems
    Upscaling work already underway to restore two iconic ecosystems will deliver jobs and a lasting legacy, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says.  “The Jobs for Nature programme provides $1.25 billion over four years to offer employment opportunities for people whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 recession. “Two new projects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Public Housing Plan announced
    The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government is committed to continuing its public house build programme at pace and scale. The extra 8,000 homes – 6000 public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates President Joe Biden on his inauguration
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter to both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago