The Sunday Star-Times has the facts on farm sales to foreigners:
Fears that China is gobbling up New Zealand land are misplaced, official figures show.
Americans, Canadians and even Liechtensteinians are buying far more land.
Figures released by the Overseas Investment Office show that of the 872,313 hectares of gross land sold to foreign interests over the past five years, only 223ha were sold toÂ Chinese.
People from the landlocked principality of Liechtenstein had purchased 10 times more land than the ChineseÂ - 2,144ha in the same period.
The top buyers were the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and Israel. The United States had 194 purchases for a total of 193,208ha.
Even when you add the Westpac farms formerly owned by the Crafars China is still lagging behind the round eyes in land investment in New Zealand.
Where was Labour’s concern as all the land sold in the previous 5 years to non-Chinese? Where was Winston Peters as seppos, canuks, poms, ockers andÂ theÂ evil Juice stole or birthright at market rates?
Oh that’s right…those sales are ok because they look like us.
The thing that galls me is that everyone opposed to these sales thought nothing of the fact that they were privately owned, and were like any other private sale sold to the highest bidder. I suspect that those who cried the loudest had the least.
Labour now has a bizarre policy that sales to foreigners are ok if they live here…and after all the racist outrage over the past month you have to wonder why any rich lister Chinese investor would even bother.
The missing component in all this is the fact that if a Kiwi buyer bought the farms…oh I don’t know…someone like Michael Fay…the purchase would be highly leveraged and the “profits”, such as they are, would flow offshore anyway to the Aussie banks that financed the purchase.
As for the facetious arguments that Chinese buyers of land won’t spend money in new Zealand…well just where are they supposing they are going to vet services from, or fencing supplies, or mechanics for their farm implements, or tankers to pick up the milk, or drivers to drive the tankers?