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Peters Calls For The Immediate Disclosure

Media Release

26 November 2001

PETERS CALLS FOR THE IMMEDIATE DISCLOSURE OF GOVERNMENT POLITICIANS FINANCIAL INTEREST IN AIR NEW ZEALAND

New Zealand First Leader and Member for Tauranga, Rt Hon Winston Peters, today called for a full declaration by all Government MPs to disclose their holdings of Air New Zealand shares and those of each of their family members, on the back of the ‘don’t sell’ message given by their Leader, Prime Minister Clark.

“The actions of Ms Clark in issuing advice not to sell shares in the ailing company, allegedly to assist small shareholders, represents a new level of bizarre activity by our Prime Minister and reveals the true level of her lack of business savvy”, said Mr Peters.

“The chaos caused within the stocks and shares industry by her most unwise and naive comments, have reverberated around the world,” he claimed.

“For confidence to be reinstated in her, and her Government, and in an effort to demonstrate that her actions were not intended to favour friends or acquaintances, she must insist on the immediate disclose of any vested interest of colleagues and their families,” Mr Peters said.

For instance, one member of her cabinet, Hon George Hawkins, as at 1 January 2001,was known to hold shares in a major overseas company, (BIL) with a huge shareholding stake in Air Zealand. How many others, or their families, have moved to advantage themselves in recent days as the depths of Air New Zealand’s difficulties have been exposed”, pondered Mr Peters. “I wonder too”, said Mr Peters, “how close to the Government is the individual alleged to have made $12 million from Air New Zealand share trading over the last 48 hours”.

“The public of New Zealand along with the International investment community requires the assurance of the Prime Minister and furthermore backed up with hard evidence, that she was merely in support of the small New Zealand shareholders, rather than giving a leading edge through inside information to those who might prosper handsomely by her actions. That companies such as Brierleys and Singapore Airlines along with other significant overseas players will benefit to the tune of millions of dollars of New Zealanders’ taxes as a consequence of her seriously misguided actions, will prove a double blow for our country” concluded Mr Peters.
ENDS

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