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John Key admits National Government failed to properly monitor Solid Energy

Written By: - Date published: 1:26 pm, October 29th, 2013 - 30 comments
Categories: Economy, john key, national, Privatisation, same old national - Tags:

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This just in from Stuff:

If Solid Energy was partly privatised, it probably would not be in the mess it is in now, Prime Minister John Key says.

Continuing to defend the Government’s sell-down of state assets, Key said today a deal to bailout Solid Energy might not have been necessary had the company been partially floated.

“My own personal view is if we’d had the mixed ownership model applied to Solid Energy, it may well not have gotten itself in the mess it did,” he told Firstline.

That’s because the external analysis would have rung a lot of bells and demanded a lot more accountability,” he said.

He also said other state-owned assets such as TVNZ and NZ Post, had proven not to be good long-term investments to hold on to.

So let me get this right.  Solid Energy is fully under Government Control, subject to Ministerial and Treasury oversight, has in the past been worth a huge dividend flow, and Key thinks that external analysis and oversight would have improved performance?

This is as damning an acknowledgement of failure as you can imagine.

Mind you given this Government’s performance I think that the acknowledgement is appropriate.

The performance has been blighted by such actions as:

Key is right and there is a problem.  The solution is not to partially float Solid Energy however.  The only solution that will directly address these problems is to change the Government and elect a group of people who are competent.

30 comments on “John Key admits National Government failed to properly monitor Solid Energy”

  1. Philgwellington Wellington 1

    Xox
    Heaven help us all. This National government is even worse than the previous Labour Government. Throw them both
    out and start afresh. First, by getting the shonky money
    bribery of vested Corporate
    influence out of the game.
    Second, have an independent,
    Government funded, non
    commercial public media to
    better inform the public about
    what is going on. Failure to achieve this, we’ll end up just like a little USA ‘s clueless baby brother, with no nappies.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      Failure to achieve this, we’ll end up just like a little USA ‘s clueless baby brother, with no nappies.

      That seems to be what National are trying for.

  2. captain hook 2

    yes the thing is some of the so called leftists really dont understand what is going on here.
    If they read their Marx properly they would know whats happening.
    Its not the cost of solid energy that it is at stake iit is the revenue strream so whoever buys it eventually reaps the reward of a low price and the bux in perpetuity in future.
    Marx called this lack of understanding false consciousness and he was not wrong.

  3. captain hook 3

    p.s. where is my geek gravatar?
    I wuz kinda geeting used to it!

    [lprent; 🙂 weekend is over. You could always create your own avatar rather than relying on the defaults. ]

  4. Tom Gould 4

    Of course, the brain dead media will run this as a reason to sell everything, on the basis that their bestie Key says ‘private good, public bad.’ That’s the same brain dead chooks who say Cunliffe’s ‘honeymoon’ with the media is over … after 7 weeks. Unlike their bestie, who has been Tory leader for 7 years and still enjoys an on-going ‘honeymoon’ with them.

  5. Ad 5

    Good call. There’s a natural conclusion to “learned male incompetence” that goes all the way here.

    This together with listing one of New Zealand;’s largest companies for a buck today staggers belief in National’s economic management competence.

    Maybe it’s this:
    “How do you get National to run a small economy? Given them a medium-sized one and wait three years.”

  6. dv 6

    If Solid Energy was partly privatised, it probably would not be in the mess it is in now, Prime Minister John Key says.

    So how privatisation work again with Transrail and BNZ
    Pike river is also an outstanding success as with Mainzeal
    And what was that insurance co in ChCh?

  7. ghostwhowalksnz 7

    What exactly is the additional monitoring that would have happened under this exotic beats called part privatising with the state holding 51% ?

    Solid Energy had its own board and a high flying CEO, so I presume the the market would have sent its ‘signals’ like a falling share price ?

    Wait , isnt that what has happened with Mighty River Power ?

  8. tc 8

    Well paid off CEO’s (Elder) and chairmen (Palmer) will tell no tales, in public anyway.

    This willful negligence needs to be built into the narrative along with calling NZP/TVNZ investments and not the providers of services.

    NZP is still an essential service especially to the elderly and rural. TVNZ’s not as valuable as it could be but we know why that is with current and past gov’t’s responsible for that.

  9. Tracey 9

    So why did he choose mrp and meridian to go first. The thing is you cant say your soe and finance ministers took their eye off the ball and/or arent good enough to oversee such things and then rely on their judgment over which assets to sell.

    • tc 9.1

      Exactly Tracey and just adds more BS to the massive pile already out of his and other ministers mouths from this gov’t already.

      MRP and meridian are the sweetest plums with the hydro generators well placed in a potentially carbon taxed world and they know that, anyway they choose nothing they follow the script that has a running order given to them.

    • fender 9.2

      That’s because they judge ALL assets are better off sold, at least half of the asset anyway.

      From the stuff article:
      “People look at it through rose-tinted glasses, but the reality is the SOE [State-Owned Enterprise] model is not actually a brilliant model,” Key said.

      “The mixed-ownership model is probably a better model,” Key said.

      • Tat Loo (CV) 9.2.1

        “The mixed-ownership model is probably a better model,” Key said.

        Better for whom was the follow up question.

        • Draco T Bastard 9.2.1.1

          /exactly

          It’s certainly not better for the country as history shows.

          • Sacha 9.2.1.1.1

            “Probably” a better model – not like he cares, either way.

            • fender 9.2.1.1.1.1

              The “probably” had the same effect when I read it too, he couldn’t really care less, he can’t even pretend to care or sound like someone who’s done their homework to make a call in the best interest of the whole country.

      • Draco T Bastard 9.2.2

        That’s because they judge ALL assets are better off sold, at least half of the asset anyway.

        No, they want them all sold. Privatising the commons has been part of the greedy’s plan for all of recorded history. It’s never worked and results in the collapse of the society but they want to be rich and special.

      • Francis 9.2.3

        “People look at it through rose-tinted glasses, but the reality is the SOE [State-Owned Enterprise] model is not actually a brilliant model,”

        If that’s the case, maybe it’s time to go back to the Government Department model. Particularly for areas like NZ Post and TVNZ…

  10. red blooded 10

    Well, Key and his mates can’t back away from that line now: it’s their mantra. The trick is to find a way to get ‘Mum and Dad’ (as opposed to political blog folk) to see past the fog of doublespeak and to decide its a defining issue, both on terms of values and economic management.

  11. tc 11

    Always a toughy that one with an MSM in their corner not even bothering to ask a few basic obvious questions of the slippery one allowing his spin free reign.

    Any PM admitting that across the ditch would be hammered by the media, Keatings ‘recession we had to have’ comes to mind whereas here it’s thanks for coming on PM how lucky we are to have you, anything thing we can help you sell just let us know.

  12. BLiP 12

    Another lie from John Key to cover his government’s use of Solid Energy as a vehicle for the old bustout scam – get a limited liability business, borrow as much as you can on the business, go bankrupt (cf Media Works).

  13. newsense 13

    And the same guys who trotted out the BS ‘if it was a CEO’ line on Len Brown?

    How about if it was a CEO or CFO on English and Key?

    Allowed a subsidiary company to go bust and failed to get value out of a selldown of core assets. Do you think CEO’s that did that would get away with the line, well we’re the private sector, the model the public sector has does it so much better?

    Or do you think they would be forced to take some responsibility for their screw-up?

    I’m going with the latter…what will Stuff do?

    • Tat Loo (CV) 13.1

      Also notice how the Board and CEO at Fonterra are doing just fine in their positions thank you, despite hundreds of millions of economic damage, supplier losses and reputational damage to NZ industry occurring under their watch.

      Lucky then that no one was caught with their pants down around their ankles on the job, or they would have to GO right now.

  14. newsense 14

    Saying also that TVNZ had proved not to be a good asset to hang on to just confirms Key as a corporate raider, not a PM. This is another democracy decreasing move, from a government that does anything rather than face up to questions and debates. We can outsource being national broadcasting to the highest foreign corporate bidder (who subsequently has cost over runs and can’t meet requirements but that’s ok because we can’t hold them accountable because of their contract…)

  15. fambo 15

    Whatever the problem – the solution is always to sell the asset with this government

  16. captain hook 16

    the lower the share price then the more value of the future income stream.
    doh!

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