Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Let the foals thrive

So says the New Zealand Herald on the SOEs. While Labour's change of policy on privatisation is a good thing, (if politically bizarre - as The Standard correctly points out, it takes away their strongest differentiation from National, one they played up in 2008) they might not be serious or take their finance spokesperson seriously. Nevertheless, it's cleared the way for a sensible privatisation process from National. The aim should be:
  • Apply the Air New Zealand approach to the existing SOEs;
  • In other words, make them all listed companies subject to Securities Commission oversight;
  • This would allow for the abolition of CCMAU (Crown Company Monitoring and Advisory Unit).
The other option is as the Capital Markets Advisory Group has suggested, which is share floats whenever SOEs or their subsidiaries (for example, KiwiBank) need money to expand, they can list ordinary shares on the NZX. Either way, Mark Weldon wins.

The other way would be to create one uber SOE with all the others as subsidiaries. Kind of like a New Zealand zaibutsu.

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