Empty promises on asset sales unconvincing   24 Nov 2011

National’s latest empty promises on asset sales won’t convince voters, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Cunliffe.

“John Key’s assurance yesterday that he could enforce a 10 per cent cap on any one shareholder by law will not convince anyone, as it is transparently a last-minute fig leaf to try to dampen public opposition,” David Cunliffe said.

“Ownership caps cut across the legal rights of minority shareholders and do not in any event prevent the on-sale of shares to foreign buyers.

“Nor is there is any evidence to give credence to his assurance that 85 to 90 per cent of the assets will remain in Kiwi hands. He can’t convince Treasury and he can’t convince the rest of us,” David Cunliffe said.

“He is unable to say how he would ensure Kiwi ownership would be retained. The best he can do is say --- ‘I’ve spent my life studying investment banking’. That’s hardly reassuring.

“Kiwis have studied too, and they know the history of asset sales. Air New Zealand, rail, BNZ, Telecom, Contact --- all have ended up in foreign ownership and the consequences have been dire. In our last term in government, Labour had to repeatedly intervene to stop price-gouging and asset-stripping by foreign owners of what were once public assets.

“John Key says National would retain 51 per cent ownership in our assets --– until the next crisis at least --- but voters know that minority shareholders have significant power,” David Cunliffe said. “They could sue the Government if it refused to raise power prices to increase profits for private owners or groups of owners.

“We know from experience that privatisation of electricity companies means more expensive power. MED data shows that privately-owned Contact and Transpower have the most expensive electricity prices across 87 per cent of New Zealand.

“Is that the future we want --- a future where the electricity we use every day to power our industry and heat our homes is more expensive because foreign buyers want to squeeze all the profit they can out of our country? That’s what will happen if a National government is re-elected,” David Cunliffe said.

“Mr Key has made it abundantly clear that he will push ahead with asset sales despite the overwhelming case against the policy and overwhelming public opposition. Only a Labour-led government can prevent our future falling into foreign hands.”

(New Zealand Labour Party)

Add a comment

Bookmark and Share

News

Singapore-NZ Defence relationship celebrated

18 Jan 2017 News
16 JANUARY, 2017New Zealand and Singapore’s Defence Ministers Gerry Brownlee and Dr Ng Eng Hen today observed Exercise Thunder... more

Earthquake hit farmers to be offered movable homes

18 Jan 2017 News
18 JANUARY, 2017Twenty temporary housing units at the Rawhiti Domain used to support families through the Christchurch earthquakes are... more

Business

Korean FTA delivers new round of tariff cuts

18 Jan 2017 Business News
8 JANUARY, 2017More local businesses looking to expand into Korea will benefit from the latest round of tariff reductions under the... more

Solid growth for NZ despite fragile world economy

26 Dec 2016 Business News
The New Zealand economy continued to grow solidly in the September quarter, posting a higher than expected 1.1 per cent growth rate... more

Living

3rd Position, Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series

21 Nov 2016 Lifestyle
Emirates Team New Zealand EMIRATES TEAM NEW ZEALAND CLOSES IN 3rd POSITION THE LOUIS VUITTON AMERICA’S CUP WORLD SERIES more

Arts Foundation Award recipients for 2016

14 Nov 2016 Lifestyle
The Arts Foundation Next generation of internationally acclaimed talent among the Arts Foundation Award recipients for 2016Under ... more

Property

NZ house prices gain 11% in October

14 Nov 2016 Property
Article - BusinessDesk Monday 14 November 2016 10:28 AM NZ house prices gain 11% in October, driven by sales of higher value homes By... more

RBNZ sees pressures building in Auckland construction sector

11 Nov 2016 Property By Paul McBeth
Article - BusinessDesk Thursday 10 November 2016 04:04 PM RBNZ sees pressures building in Auckland construction sector By Paul ... more

Migration

Good progress on investment attraction strategy

8 Dec 2016 Migration
Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce has welcomed news that New Zealand is attracting a higher level of quality international... more

Changes to Financial Markets Conduct Act impact UK pension transfers

1 Nov 2016 Migration
New Zealand Government Hon Paul GoldsmithMinister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs 1 November 2016 Changes to Financial Markets... more

Travel

Tourism spending strong ahead of summer season

18 Jan 2017 Travel & Tourism
12 JANUARY, 2017Tourism spending continued to grow throughout most regions in the year to November 2016, providing a solid base ahead... more

Work on $700m Puhoi road underway

8 Dec 2016 Travel & Tourism
Hon. Simon Bridges 8 December, 2016 Prime Minister John Key and Transport Minister Simon Bridges have turned the sod on th... more

Sport

Counties Manukau claim double victories at 2017 Bayleys National Sevens

18 Jan 2017 Rugby
15 January 2017 Counties Manukau are national sevens rugby champions.  In a stunning double effort, Counties Manukau have been... more

WHITE FERNS in form as competitions heat up

18 Jan 2017 Cricket
Posted Tuesday, 17 January, 2017 in International NewsNew Zealand’s WHITE FERNS are already showing Australia how it’s... more

Columns

Gordon Campbell on the Gareth Morgan crusade

11 Nov 2016 Opinion
Column - Gordon Campbell   Gordon Campbell on the Gareth Morgan crusade First published on Werewolf more

Gordon Campbell on the US election outcome

10 Nov 2016 Opinion
Column - Gordon Campbell   Gordon Campbell on the US election outcome more

Kiwi Success

High Commissioner to India announced

8 Dec 2016 Appointments
Hon. Murray McCully 7 December, 2016 High Commissioner to India announced Foreign Minister Murray McCully today... more

Acting District Court Judge appointed

11 Nov 2016 Appointments
New Zealand Government Hon Christopher FinlaysonAttorney-General 11 November 2016 Acting District Court Judge appointed Wellington... more

Recruitment

NZ Government accepts recommendations on pay equity

8 Dec 2016 Recruitment
Hon. Paula Bennett,  Hon. Michael Woodhouse, Hon. Louise Upston 24 November, 2016 The Government will update the Equa... more

Fisher Funds hunts for new head to replace founder

2 Nov 2016 Recruitment
Article - BusinessDesk Tuesday 01 November 2016 04:42 PM Fisher Funds hunts for new head to replace founder Carmel Fisher By Paul ... more

s