Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Who Owns the South Island Power Grid?


Who Owns the South Island Power Grid?
Good Question. Don’t Assume It Is Transpower

The Government’s proposed partial privatisation of Mighty River Power, Meridian and Genesis Energy has focused attention on the ownership of our State-owned electricity generation companies. The majority of New Zealanders oppose the likelihood of such vital national infrastructure going into foreign ownership.

But what about the State-owned company which “owns” the South Island power grid? Does Transpower actually own that?

Members of the Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa (CAFCA) will be asking that at Transpower’s Annual Public Meeting at the George Hotel, Christchurch, at 4 p.m. Thursday October 18th (the CAFCA banner will be displayed outside the venue from 3.30 p.m.).

Here’s what we know about the ownership of the South Island grid. Excuse us if the explanation is complex; that’s because the deal was deliberately structured to be complex.
In 2003 Transpower sold the South Island grid and leased it back.
The buyer of the grid was the US-based Wachovia Bank;
• The leaseback of the grid runs through the Cayman Islands, a tax haven;
• The leaseback of the grid runs for about 100 years, but Transpower has the option to repurchase the grid after about 25 years;
• The deal was tax-driven. At the time, it was being arranged, an inquiry into abusive tax avoidance schemes was underway in the United States. A ban on this particular type of deal (lease to service) took effect from just days after this deal was signed;
• Transpower delayed for a year showing the one-off profit effect in its financial report because of uncertainties related to the tax inquiry.
That meant that Transpower is the operator (not the owner) of the South Island grid.
During the early days of the current global financial crisis, Wachovia was taken over by Wells Fargo, another American bank.
Transpower’s 2012 Financial Report states that, in November 2009, Transpower partially terminated the cross-border lease over the South Island grid. However, that same Financial Report contains material which suggests that the cross-border lease is continuing.
The effect of the cross border lease was to duplicate ownership of the grid, so that ownership could be claimed in the United States as well as in New Zealand.

We call upon Transpower to explain:

What is meant by partial termination of the lease?
Can any US organisation still claim today that it owns the South Island grid? Yes or no?


CAFCA
www.cafca.org.nz
http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=117427631610589&ref=ts
http://www.watchblogaotearoa.blogspot.com/
https://twitter.com/#!/NZN4S

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The National Leadership “Contest”

Key’s endorsement of English has turned this “contest” into a race for second place.

This succession was well planned. Lets not forget that English was told by Key in September of his intention to resign, and English was the only member of Cabinet entrusted with that information before it was sprung on everyone else on Monday morning. More>>

Latest: Judith Collins and Jonathan Coleman have withdrawn from the leadership race, leaving Bill English the only candidate to replace John Key as Prime Minister.

 

Education, Marketing, Taxes: Health Groups Call For Actions For Sugary Drinks

The New Zealand Dental Association is launching a new consensus statement on Sugary Drinks endorsed by key health organisations. The actions seek to reduce harm caused by sugary drinks consumption. More>>

ALSO:

More Departures? David Shearer Proposed For UN Peacekeeping Role

Mt Albert MP David Shearer is being proposed for a demanding and exciting role heading the United Nations peacekeeping force in South Sudan, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. More>>

ALSO:

Security Agencies' Reports: GCSB Wants To Give ISPs More Power To Block Threats

The Government Communications Security Bureau wants to give internet service providers more information and power to block cyber threats which are increasing, its director told the intelligence and security select committee yesterday.. More>>

ALSO:

Education: Charter Schools Misleading Pass Rates

Labour: NCEA results for charter schools have been massively overstated... In one case a school reported a 93.3 per cent pass rate when the facts show only 6.7 per cent of leavers achieved NCEA level two. More>>

ALSO:

Rebstock Report Resolution: SSC Apologises To Derek Leask And Nigel Fyfe

Following a complaint by Mr Leask, the Ombudsman found that the State Services Commission acted unreasonably in relation to Mr Leask and identified numerous deficiencies in the investigation process and in the publication of the final report and in the criticisms it contained of Mr Leask... More>>

ALSO:

International Rankings: Student Results 'Show More Resourcing Needed'

NZEI: New Zealand had only held relatively steady in international rankings in some areas because the average achievement for several other OECD countries had lowered the OECD average -- not because our student achievement has improved. More>>

ALSO:

Earlier:

Salvation Army Report: Beyond The Prison Gate Report

A new Salvation Army report says changes must be made to how prisoners re-enter society for New Zealanders to feel safe and secure in their homes and communities. More>>

ALSO:

Surprise Exit: Gordon Campbell On The Key Resignation

The resignation of John Key is one thing. The way that Key and his deputy Bill English have screwed the scrum on the leadership succession vote (due on December 12) is something else again. It remains to be seen whether the party caucus – ie, the ambitious likes of Steven Joyce, Judith Collins, Paula Bennett, and Amy Adams – will simply roll over... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news