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Treasury dump shows English ignores advice

SOEs Spokesperson

21 December 2012 MEDIA STATEMENT
Treasury dump shows English ignores advice

A Treasury documents dump on the last Friday before Christmas shows Bill English is willing to ignore the advice of officials on the timing of asset sales, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove.

“Two days ago Bill English said he is considering selling all three electricity SOEs in 2013 even though that will flood the market and depress demand which will lead to low share prices.

“National is now so desperate to sell its SOEs after the debacle of 2012 that it wants to foist all three onto the market next year. That is economic idiocy and Treasury have told the Government exactly that.

“Treasury’s dump at 11am today included a document that points out: ‘Market capacity dictates that it is only practical to complete one sale of the size of these three companies per half year’.

“There are only two windows to sell companies - that’s after the half-year and annual reports. Treasury knows this and the Government should listen.

“Selling our SOEs was a terrible idea in the first place. But flooding the market because your self-imposed timetable has slipped through your own incompetence is an insult to New Zealanders.

“Polls show 80% of New Zealanders are against the sales and over 300,000 people have signed the petition calling for a referendum. The Government must listen to the people and hold a referendum on asset sales.”

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