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OIC Finds Roger Winner To Be Of Good Character

Hold The Front Page! OIC Finds Roger Award Winner To Be Of Good Character

The Japanese forestry company, Juken Nissho, won the 2003 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand. The Judges' Report detailing why they picked it as the winner can be read online at

http://canterbury.cyberplace.co.nz/community/CAFCA/publications/Roger/Roger2003.pdf

If, for any reason that Link doesn't work, go to www.cafca.org.nz click on the Views, Analyses and Research page and follow the Roger Award links.

One of the very few safeguards in New Zealand's laughably weak repertoire of foreign investment laws (soon to be rendered even weaker by the Government's current review of the foreign investment regime) is that the persons exercising control over a foreign company be of good character. Note - not the company itself, but the individuals controlling it.

So, in March, we wrote to the Overseas Investment Commission, sending them a hard copy of the Judges' Report, and saying:

"We believe that the material contained in this Report, plus the material from which the judges made their decision (including the voluminous and damning Occupational Health and Safety Service audit of Juken Nissho) indicates that 'the persons who exercise control over the applicants' are not of good character, in that they have allowed this disgraceful state of affairs to come about, particularly the repeated violations of New Zealand’s health and safety laws. In the process, Juken Nissho has acquired a most impressive criminal record, which is detailed in the Report".

We specifically asked the Commission why it had approved two new applications from Juken Nissho, in January, and, in light of the evidence we had presented, asked the Commission to revoke those two approvals.

Today we got our answer. "The Commission has considered the information you have provided to the extent it is relevant to the Overseas Investment Act and Regulations. Following its investigation into the issues raised the Commission remains satisfied that Juken Nissho Limited has previously and continues to fulfil the criteria as set out in section 12B(2)(a)-(c) of the Overseas Investment Act 1973 and in particular that the persons who exercise control over the company continue to be of good character".

So that's that, then. Our foreign investment laws in action. Which is why it is critical that people demand that the Government use this current review to toughen not weaken the relevant laws and processes.

A leaflet detailing the review, CAFCA's analysis of it, and what you can do about it, can be read online at

http://canterbury.cyberplace.co.nz/community/CAFCA/OIAReview1.pdf

If that Link doesn't work, then go to www.cafca.org.nz and click on the Foreign Investment in New Zealand page.

We have updated that leaflet to include what we now know about the review (from leaked details) and the new deadline. That updated version is not yet online. If you'd like a hard copy or copies, then contact us and send us your postal address. If you're ordering several hundred (or more), we'd appreciate a koha for the copying and postage costs involved.

Murray Horton
Secretary/Organiser
CAFCA

Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa
Box 2258, Christchurch, New Zealand
cafca@chch.planet.org.nz
www.cafca.org.nz

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