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FMA Placebo Look At Silver Fern Farms Beggars Belief

Rt Hon Winston Peters

New Zealand First Leader

Member of Parliament for Northland
25 MAY 2016

FMA Placebo Look At Silver Fern Farms Beggars Belief

New Zealand First is asking what the point of the Financial MarketsAuthority (FMA) is, with its report on Silver Fern Farms not being worth the paper it is written on.

“If this is the FMA’s standard for investigation then it’s no wonder hard working Kiwis are getting ripped off,” says the Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First and Member of Parliament for Northland.

“The FMA did not even call us once to discuss our complaint. We understand their ‘engagement’ with Silver Fern Farms consisted of a preliminary meeting and being sent self-serving documents from Silver Fern Farms.

“It did not include an accurate chronological record of accounting timelines critical to any investigation. That’s not an investigation, that’s an establishment fireside chat.

“The FMA failed to send anyone into Silver Fern Farms’ head office to carry out a detailed investigation into its documents. This means it did not seek or read internal financials, board reports or board minutes.

“That’s the least that we would expect if the FMA was doing its job properly.

“How did they expect their investigation to get the truth when they just took Silver Fern Farms’ word at face value? Did the FMA seriously think the board and management of Silver Fern Farms, the subject now of serious criticism, would magically send them incriminating documents and records?

“The Auckland-based FMA is full of the same establishment apologists that five years ago, investigated former NZX boss Mark Weldon in relation to Australia's Clear Grain Exchange. They said there was nothing to see here.

“So how does the FMA explain why Mr Weldon is, right now, facing serious legal action on the same matter from Australian interests when New Zealand’s FMA couldn’t even find a prima facie case?

“New Zealand First does not intend to let highly paid public officers get away with less than competent performance of their statutory duties. They should be warned. We see no point in a lapdog FMA costing taxpayers $30m every year.

“Masquerading as the market and public watchdog whilst acting as a poodle is going to stop,” says Mr Peters.

ENDS

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