INDEPENDENT NEWS

Foreign Ownership Review Irrational

Published: Mon 10 Nov 2003 09:58 PM
Foreign Ownership Review Irrational
The Government should stop using irrational concerns as justification for a review to hinder future land ownership arrangements in New Zealand says Tom Lambie, President, Federated Farmers of New Zealand (Inc).
Mr Lambie was commenting on Michael Cullen's announcement earlier today of a review of the Overseas Investment Act and the ability for foreigners to own and manage private land in New Zealand.
"In order for there to be any justification for a review, the nature of the problem needs to be identified, the extent of the problem and whether legislation and regulation is the most appropriate way to resolve the problem.
"This clearly has not happened.
"Government claims that foreign capital is needed if New Zealand is to return to the top half of the OECD and develop the economy to its fullest are contradicted by the Government reviewing the Act to make it more difficult for people to invest in New Zealand.
"To make matters worse, the review was started in mid-October in the absence of public input with the Government only now deciding to make it publicly known.
'The Government cannot afford to risk repeating the same mistakes it made on the foreshore, access and border security tax by rushing ahead with something they have not properly thought through," concluded Mr Lambie.

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