New Zealand Report: Selwyn Manning delivers NZ Report to Australia’s radio FiveAA.com.au. This week: Maori Concerned Over TPPA permitting foreign buy-up of prime New Zealand land + Sheep Milk boon industry looms – Recorded live on 9/10/15.
Maori Concerned Over TPPA Permitting Buy-Up of Land (ref. http://foreignaffairs.co.nz/2015/10/08/tpp-may-affect-maori-land-interests/ )
Senior Labour Party MP and close relative to the Maori King, Nanaia Mahuta, is calling on Maori Party MPs to front up and explain why the Government’s Trans Pacific Partnership negotiators have failed to restrict foreign buyers of New Zealand land.
The Maori Party is part of the National led Government coalition, and, Nanaia Mahuta is largely supported by one of New Zealand’s largest, wealthiest, and strongest tribes, the Tainui Iwi.
Maori are divided over the TPPA, especially since details began to emerge this week revealing how New Zealand’s TPPA negotiators had agreed to permit foreign buyers – or those originating from Trans Pacific Partnership countries – the right to purchase land or housing blocks of up to $200 million each… before having to seek the approval of the Overseas Investment Office.
On Thursday Nanaia Mahuta said Australia’s TPPA negotiators managed to secure Australia’s right to restrict foreign buyers of Australian homes.
Likewise, Malaysian negotiators secured an agreement that permits Malaysia to ban foreign ownership of affordable housing.
Compare this to New Zealand. Before the TPP negotiations, any foreign purchases of housing or land blocks, valued at $100 million, first required the consent of the Overseas Investment Office and the approval of a minister of the Crown.
The Government’s negotiators caved in on that point, and have allowed that cap to rise to $200 million.
Maori groups have already taken the Government to court over the TPPA. It is facing a legal challenge in the Maori rights court, the Waitangi Tribunal. It appears more litigation is coming.
Yesterday, Mahuta said, the Government has negotiated away our rights to protect our land.
For its part, the National -led Government has stated it has got the best TPP deal possible. Prime Minister John Key said: “As a country, we won’t get rich selling things to ourselves. Instead, we need to sell more of our products and services to customers around the world, and TPP helps makes that happen.”
And while the Government failed to negotiate a good deal for Kiwi dairy farmers, some of New Zealand’s state-owned farms have found solace in the knowledge… that if you look after that special relationship between Kiwis and Sheep, then, great rewards will flow.
This story shows there’s more to sheep than just wool and mutton.
The state owned Spring Sheep farm near Taupo has started milking its 3500 sheep. Apparently, sheep milk could be, according to the Government’s Landcorp spokesperson Nick Gowland, a billion dollar industry in ten years.
So the dairy cow’s loss is the milking ewe’s bonus. There’s happy days ahead.
And that news has certainly got the government and some farmers rubbing their hands together.