The ODT reports:
More than 50,000ha of high country between Lake Wanaka and Queenstown will be protected in the largest conservation undertaking on private land in New Zealand’s history.
In an agreement between the Queen Elizabeth II National Trust and a company linked with millionaire record producer Robert ”Mutt” Lange, most of Motatapu, Mount Soho, Glencoe and Coronet Peak stations will be placed under protective covenants, effectively New Zealand’s first national park in private hands.
I expect Labour to condemn this as a privatisation or something equally stupid.
The four stations, which are leased in perpetuity by Soho Properties Ltd, cover 53,000ha of land – equal in size to the combined areas of Paparoa and Abel Tasman national parks.
Now that’s a reasonable size.
Soho Properties lawyer Willy Sussman said he had been ”at pains” to explain to Mr Lange the magnitude of what he was agreeing to.
”I was almost labouring the point – I asked him ‘do you understand what this means?”
”His reply was just one word – ‘absolutely’.”
As well as being a ”musical genius”, his Switzerland-based client was an unconventional and far-sighted thinker who wanted to ”make a positive difference to the world”.
If Labour and the Greens had their way, Mr Lange would never have been allowed to buy that land, and hence not able to place it in the public domain. This is a good example of how stupid their policies are.
Not all foreign investment in land is good or bad. That is why applications should be decided on a case by case basis, with the test being whether it delivers a net boost to New Zealand. Labour and Greens want to get rid of that test, and have a total ban. This story is a another good reason to stop them gaining power.
3 News reports:
The sale of Lochinver Station now hangs in the balance after an election promise from Labour Party leader David Cunliffe today.
Mr Cunliffe says if elected Labour would use powers under the law to block its sale to a Chinese company.
Lochinver Station is being sold to Shanghai Pengxin in a $70 million deal. But that now depends on the result of the election.
The Overseas Investment Office (OIO) still needs to decide whether to approve it, with Government ministers signing that off. Mr Cunliffe has already made his decision: Labour would block it.
“He’s effectively in a dangerous position here, pre-judging the decision, and that could be reviewed by the courts,” says Prime Minister John Key.
“Absolutely the Government would almost certainly be open to legal action if they pre-judge the decision made by the OIO without knowing facts.”
This is beyond pathethic. Labour know nothing at all about the proposal, and how many jobs it may create, or extra export income for NZ. The only thing they know is that the buyer is a Chinese company, and that is enough for their xenophobic kneejerk reaction. It’s one thing to say no, after you consider a case on its merits. But Labour are pandering to blatant racism.