137 state owned farms

Stuff reports:

Landcorp owns 137 farms totalling 158,394 hectares, and manages another 226,692 ha of farms. Its livestock holdings are made up of 77,500 dairy cattle, 580,000 sheep, 82,000 beef cattle and 105,000 deer.

It employs 692 staff.

They should all be sold to farmers, unless they are needed for specific purposes such as conservation or treaty claims.

We do not need the Government owning and running 137 farms.

The company had shareholders’ funds of about $1.5. billion against total liabilities of $360 million, according to its half year report to the end of December.

But it made a profit of just $1m in the last six months of 2014, down from $13.4m in the same period in 2013.

If you sold Landcorp for $1.5 billion, then the reduced interest on debt would be around $75 million a year.

English said other SOEs faced challenging issues.

“Post’s business is shrinking, TVNZ has to deal with competition from Netflix and everybody else, the Public Trust, Kordia has a set of broadcast-related assets when technology has moved on.”

Yep. Once TVNZ could have been sold for over a billion dollars. Today you would not get $100 million. The state is not a good owner of commercial companies. Let the state focus on its core responsibilities, and let the private sector own the farms and other businesses.

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