The government’s mixed ownership model is underway and it is looking very popular.
A $1 million advertising campaign will today kick off the Government’s bid to spark a rush for shares in the first sale of state assets in more than a decade.
Investment experts expect hundreds of thousands of people to get in the queue when the Government starts building a list of potential buyers in Mighty River Power shares – attracted by no brokerage fees and a loyalty bonus limited to New Zealand citizens and permanent residents.
Prime Minister John Key yesterday reiterated the Government’s promise that Kiwis would be first in the queue for shares and said he would hold to his election-year promise to aim to keep ownership of at least 85 per cent of Mighty River Power in New Zealand hands. Of that, 51 per cent will be the stake that remains in Government ownership.
A website launched today will be accessible only from within New Zealand as a sign of the Government’s sensitivity. “The Government’s intentions are crystal clear; that is . . . New Zealanders at every turn are favoured,” Mr Key said.
But opponents are accusing the Government of ignoring widespread opposition to asset sales. They have collected nearly 400,000 signatures in a bid to force a referendum. Read more »