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Helen Clark's SOE Mystery Solved

Helen Clark is obviously embarrassed that we've outed her plan to rustle up cash to pay for Labour's promises, National MP Murray McCully said today.

"This morning she told Paul Holmes on Newstalk ZB that the plan to take money out of SOEs to pay for the Government's other plans was a 'mystery' to her that had 'come out of thin air.'

"She said she had had Treasury officials working all weekend to track it down.

"Well, we can solve the mystery for you, Helen. It's all there in black and white in papers prepared by Treasury for the Minister of Finance and the Minister of SOEs in the run-up to this year's Budget," Mr McCully said.

National obtained the papers under the Official Information Act.

"In a paper dated 23 February officials suggest a 'demanding dividend policy' which could 'release capital for other priority investments to achieve the Government's wider policy objectives.'

"And a paper on 5 April says 'Ministers have decided that withdrawals of capital from SOEs can be used to meet fiscal or social capital investment priorities.'

"Helen Clark says she sat on a number of Budget committees so it's inconceivable that she would have been out of the loop on this one.

"I'm happy to give her my papers, but I've written to her encouraging her to seek a full set without all the deletions.

"She'll see the only mystery is Helen Clark's gall in thinking she could get away with such a swiftie," Mr McCully said.


Attached: Treasury papers Newstalk ZB transcript McCully letter to Prime Minister

Inquiries: Murray McCully 021 465 085

John Goulter 04 4719 719 025 232 4303

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