by Selwyn Manning
Over $120 million worth of Auckland International Airport shares will remain in public ownership after Manukau City Council voted last night to keep its shareholding.
Manukau City Council decided its shares are a good investment and will continue to increase in value.
Manukau mayor Sir Barry Curtis says his city has a vested interested in the Airport because it is located within the city boundaries. He says the Airport provides employment for Manukau people and is a contributor to the region.
The shares were raised as a sellable item and as a means to raise the cash necessary to rid the City Council of its burdoning debt. It was debated that if the shares were sold debt could be cleared and the remainder reinvested.
This is exactly what Papakura District Council did with its shares. It sold its allocation, reinvested the cash, then used interest earned to fund infrastructural development within that city.
But as was predicted in an exclusive Scoop article on Monday - refer to http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/AK9907/S00130.htm - Manukau City Council is now eyeing up to purchase another 1.4 percent of Airport shares. This will give it a 10 percent shareholding in the company and that buys it the right for board of directors representation.
The Government sold its 51% stake in Auckland International Airport last year. Waitakere City Council has already sold its shares and Auckland City Council, Rodney District council and North Shore City Council are now all considering what to do with theirs.
Manukau mayor Sir Barry Curtis hopes his council’s
decision has created a precedence that will sway the other
Auckland councils to keep their