Waitangi Tribunal witnesses say sell Air NZ
Fri, 13 Jul 2012 8:21a.m.
The Government should consider selling down its stake in Air New Zealand first because there is no issue of water rights, the Waitangi Tribunal has been told.
The suggestion was made at a tribunal hearing yesterday considering whether Maori have special rights to fresh water and geothermal assets, and whether Treaty of Waitangi claims will be affected by partial asset sales.
The Crown puts its case on Friday and Prime Minister John Key is expected to meet Maori Party leaders next week to discuss the water rights issue.
The Government has passed legislation enabling it to sell up to 49 percent of four state-owned energy companies - Mighty River Power, Genesis, Solid Energy and Meridian - and sell down its 73.4 percent stake in Air New Zealand.
Shares in Mighty River Power are expected to be offered for sale in September.
Australian energy executive Philip Galloway told the tribunal that Solid Energy was a significant user of water in its mines and may come under the water case.
He said it could be better to float shares in Air New Zealand first, Radio New Zealand reported.
Air New Zealand is already listed on NZX.
Council witness Steven Michener also said there was too much uncertainty surrounding who owned the water Mighty River Power pushed through its turbines, and there may be other assets the Government could put on the market.
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15/07/2012 11:23:51 p.m.
We pay rates on water so the pipes are looked after and the cleaning go it, we pay electricity bills for the staff that run the plants, the up keep of the plants and wires and so on, this has nothing to do with the water. It's all about giving people clean drinking water. If we don't have hydo dams what's the other choices we have? Burn coal, build a nuclear plant.
14/07/2012 8:29:22 a.m.
The Government Lied by saying that no ones own's water..We pay water rates and electricity bills, who owns them..This Government is a Mental Case, just looked at the Dotcom and his $10,000 grantation with a New Zealand residency putting the pressures on our Police Force and the people of New Zealand and to whom pay for the Compentations..The above mentioned does'nt include the elected Government last few years worth of damages and now the pressures on the US and the New Zealand Government to pay for all the damages or compensations over Dotcoms and his CopyRights and Rights to all Human Rights..
13/07/2012 4:05:08 p.m.
Water is the key resource in hydro power (hence the name). In a country which claims that there are "no free lunches", the water has to belong to someone as it is not credible that the very source of power is actually FREE. Alternatively, if water is free, why are power prices so incredibly high? Nothing makes sense... and one can be absolutely certain that John Key will fudge each and every issue to his own advantage every single time, leaving Joe or Hone Public with an even bigger power bill.
13/07/2012 2:19:07 p.m.
If the government tried to sell the shares in air nz we would be going through the same thing only this time it would be about the air the planes go through.
13/07/2012 1:21:57 p.m.
Liquifaction in Christchurch was fresh water damage. As is any flood.As is any drought or raised electricity price due to a water shortage.If Maori take ownership will they take responsibility for any damage by water?Will they take responsibiliity for historical damage by water?These are even more important than the ownership, and yet from the Maori side they are in the GIMME GIMME mode without addressing any responsibility on what they are claiming.Nobody in NZ owns water, as under NZ/British law nobody can be deprived of water, nor held accountable for water. We have 'Act of God' used to refer to when water happens in an unfavourable way.If water is owned then this changes and the owner becomes responsible. Eg this last week a farmer had effluent escape his property while he was on holiday, so he was fined for it getting loose, plus punitve damages - even though he wasn't even there! If water is owned, any damage caused by an excess or shortage would be liable to the owner.We have carbon tax for greenhouse warming. Water is over 200x more greenhouse warming than carbon, so if factor this in it could potentially add a cost up to $8 trillion PA to the owner of water here in NZ. Do Maori really want to open that can of worms on their effort to make the rest of NZ pay for extra racial priviledges? While nobody owns water, nobody can be held accountable under NZ/British law - own it and NZ law will open the owner up for claims. Given Maori want historical ownership to claim ownership in the first place, what about 170+ years of water damage? Every insurance claim paid could be applied to the owners under 'Public Nusiance' law. Normally the statue of limitations would apply, but with the Waitangi Tribunal circumventing that, the same limits would be extended to anyone claiming against Maori ownership, ie it would apply from when Maori were made owners, not the events themselves.
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