Chart of the Day

Maurice Williamson has done the right thing and approved the sale of the Crafar Farms to the Shanghai Pengxin bid. The creditors of Alan Crafar have got the best deal that they can rather than the discounted attempt by Michael Fay to screw the scrum in his favour.

Land Information Minister Maurice Williamson and Associate Minister of Finance Dr Jonathan Coleman this morning said they had accepted the recommendation of the Overseas Investment Office (OIO) to grant consent to Milk New Zealand Holding, a subsidiary of Shanghai Pengxin Group, to acquire the 16 Crafar farms.

“It is clear that all criteria under sections 16 and 18 of the Overseas Investment Act 2005 have been met, therefore we accept the recommendation of the OIO to grant consent,” Williamson said.

“We are satisfied that Milk New Zealand’s application for consent meets the criteria set out in the Act,” Coleman said.

A condition of the sale is that a joint venture company to be owned 50/50 by the Chinese and Landcorp would develop and manage the farms.

The majority of the planning, budgeting and reporting relating to the farms would take place within the joint venture company and Landcorp would operate the farms, providing operational services and advice.

David Farrar posts about the Crafar Farms, compared with Labour’s record on land sales.

The small circle represents the size of the Crafar farms at 8,000 hectares. The large circle represents the amount of land sold to foreign owners under the last Labour Government at 650,000 hectares.

Under Labour, the equivalent of the Crafar farms were sold each and every month they were in office.



THANK YOU for being a subscriber. Because of you Whaleoil is going from strength to strength. It is a little known fact that Whaleoil subscribers are better in bed, good looking and highly intelligent. Sometimes all at once! Please Click Here Now to subscribe to an ad-free Whaleoil.

  • Apolonia

    We don’t want to be tenants  in our own land.

    • Bafacu

      Then get some people together and buy it – that’s what “ownership” as opposed to tenancy means.  If you can’t buy then be prepred to rent or not use!

      Interesting use of “we” – who is “we”?

    • Troy

      I’m sure you may the same comments when Labour went and sold heaps of land off, right?

    • AnonWgtn

      The Crafer Farms have been up for sale for over 2 years.
      If anybody wanted to buy them they were for sale on basis willing seller willing buyer
       – all we have heard is like pissing into the wind, but nimby.
      Fay wanted to make 45 million out of the deal and scarper back to Switzerland.
      Maori’s complaining – should have used some Treaty money, of which there is plenty sloshing around.
      So put up or shut up.

  • Don

    >The creditors of Alan Crafar have not got the best deal that they can

    Ummm, I think you’ve got an extra ‘not’ in there WO.

    Please re-check.

  • Orange

    I really want to draw smiley faces in the circles

  • Hakim of Phut

    The amount of Chinese land able to be bought by NZers ?

    0- now thats a circle for you

    • Orange

      you make funny stuff up

  • Bob

    Anyone know the following info and be able to add to the chart? Thinking a box around the circles showing how much productive land has been purchased by overseas interests since say 1990, a bigger box showing total overseas interest, and a final one showing total NZ productive land. Don’t care where or who from overeseas is owning what but would like to know how much of NZ has foreign investment and at what rate it’s changing.

    • Apparently some 7% of productive land is foreign owned . In last 2 years increase in foreign ownership was some 77,500 hectare (per OIO)

  • MING

    actually, it’s a wonder shanghi pengxin got anywhere near the place, with all those ‘chinese walls’ Fay reckoned he put in place between wellington and auckland back in the 80’s…

  • Gazzaw

    No one seems concerned about the Germans, Swiss, Italians, Americans & Brits who have made up the majority of the overseas investments in NZ. Maybe its because they look like us & sound like us. Maybe it’s a case of good old fashioned Asian xenophobia that lurks just below the surface in NZ and has been whipped up by Fay’s PR machine & Mr Trotman. Labour of course has now joined the pack – no choice I suppose but to follow NZFP.

  • cottonon

    Superficial comparison is not correct – This sale is of DIFFERENT CHARACTER
    This is ONE owner for the LOT with MUCH BIGGER aspirations and the money to bend the truth
    Germans, Swiss, Italians, Dutch Americans and the Brits etc have different GLOBAL ambitions and more similar cultures and FAR LESS CORRUPTION – You know when you do business in CHINA life has other values to ours unlike other peoples

    • Yes!…we must stop the encroachment of these yellow, slant eyed, bandy-legged ,conical capped, coolie bastards before all of NZ is uplifted back to China in wicker baskets… in-between all that raping of our virgins of the white race that will go on during their smoko breaks…


    • Ploughman

      You should read some history, but make sure it isn’t the biased crap that created all the misconceptions of Chinese culture.
      And get used to the facts that we are now a poor country because we elected governments that pandered to popular wishes and because we have such poor productivity that it is very hard to make a decent profit in NZ.  An example that you won’t like:  Kiwi Bank had hundreds of millions given to it, and yet it makes a profit of only 4 or 5 million per year  (less than the CPI).  We will NEVER get our money back and it has been a rotten investment.  

      We don’t have the capital to invest in large projects, nor do the wastrel Europeans. We need foreign investment and the Chinese have the cash because their poor peasants saved their hard-earned cash, mate, unlike us, and their government didn’t waste so much money by investing in projects with poor returns.

      • Frederico

        Spot on…but i will make one slight alteration
        “and their government didn’t waste so much money by investing in social projects with poor returns. “

  • EX Navy Greg

    Did YOU COMPLAIN when Labour authorised the sale of the 24,000 hectare Mt Soho station, to Shania Twain, the CANADIAN CAPITALIST singer ? Thats THREE TIMES as big. Tosser.

    • Frederico

      Yes, and Mt Soho is an iconic property in a environmentally sensitive area…the Crafarms ain’t.

  • Caleb

    Fuck you guys, lets not sell land to commies.

    • Frederico

      No.. just our milk and cheese and butter and wool and wood and fish etc…

      • Caleb

        trade goes both ways. (although id tariff the shit out of their slave labour products).
        selling off our assets, under the guise of ‘investment’, is short sighted.
        It does not put us in a better position long term.
        we are a very small country and surly a bit of patriotism and protectionism is sensible?

      • Frederico

        Dude we’re so far up debt creek we’ve got little choice….beggars can’t be choosers eh!…The Chinese coffers are busting with cash, in stark contrast to ours i would add, truck some of that Yuan down here and lets put it to good use ie this latest bid by Pengxin

  • Steve (North Shore)

    Why didn’t one of the very rich Maori Consortiums buy the Crafar Farms?
    Would that mean work instead of own? Just like Sealords?
    Come on Ngi Tahu, Tainui etc. Where are you?

    • Frederico

      Maori business is still very tribal, as you can imagine, One tribe won’t wonder into anothers turf and poach assets. anyway Ngai Tahu have their hands full developing the Eyrewell forestry estate into many large irrigated dairy farms and Tainui seem to favour commercial development. The Taupo iwi would dearly love to buy them but they picked the wrong white guy to help them. 

      • kehua

        Ngati Tuwharetoa have significant farming operations but they are individually owned Incorporations and Trusts as such they are incapable of raising that sort of money, besides that the major investments of NT are in the Forestry sector.

    • kehua

      Steve , your ignorance must be bliss.

      • Steve (North Shore)


  • Alex

    There might well be an argument that we are too liberal in letting foreigners buy land, and perhaps that’s a valid policy debate.   My problem is that NZ, apart from their racism and double standards, jut haven’t got into their heads why foreign investment is occurring, ie, NZ’ders aren’t saving enough, and are frittering their money away on imported consumer rubbish and over-inflated mortgages over their homes.  If NZ’ders have a problem with foreign ownership, then they have the power to do something about it by saving their money to build up this country’s capital reserves.   However, as is so often the case, as it will require them to change their lifestyles, NZ’ders think it’s someone else’s problem.   

  • Hoppa

    The whole scenario is dodgy.Lots of questions remain unanswered?
    Like why didnt the chineese buyers just walk into Waikato real estate firms and buy the first 16 local farms on their books?They would be all in the same localty,better quality farms with known production levels.Why but marginal run down conversions ,in some cases 100,s kms apart with animal health/management issues?
    The whole charade was driven by the banks and the debt owed by the Crafars.The farms true value was at best $170m(2 previous offers) but the total debt exceeded $200m so basically only overess investors had a look in.
    as some one who has been trying to buy a farm but outbidded by fuckwits like the Crafars(whose abilty to obtain finance exceede their abilty to farm) I foolishly hoped the banks would take a “haircut ” on this one..loose $50m and not carry on with their stupid fucking lending practices of the past..unfortunatly i will have to wait a little longer

    • Frederico

      “Like why didnt the chineese buyers just walk into Waikato real estate firms and buy the first 16 local farms on their books?”
      Because they know they still would have had to go through the OIO’s office but with 16x’s the objectors to deal with. They know a large purchase would be controversial.
      Justin: May Wang of NaturalDairys was talking to the Crafar family BEFORE the receivers moved in so she was first to knock on Stiassnys door once the receivership was under way, so therefore an offer for all the properties as one lot was there from the get go!

  • Justin

    It pisses me off that they say they couldn’t break up the farms into individual sales as this would yield a higher price.  By my understanding the more buyers you can interest the higher your demand would be – at 200mill there are fuck all who could be in that market, but separately I’m sure some kiwis could have had a chance.
    And for goodness sake the lower price would have only been adverse for the aussie banks which lent out too much and drove up the rural prices in the first place.
    Will the workers be kiwi?  Will the milk be sold at cost, reducing profit in NZ to zero and tax take down (make the profits when you mark up in China)?
    And this is nothing to do with racism – I’m against any non new zealand nationals scoping up NZ land as the highest bidders (remember the rates paid by borrowers overseas are much lower than the financing rates here for kiwis).  The Crafer farms are a straw on the camels back.
    p.s. our free trade agreement is really we get their gadgets and merchandise and they get our primary produce – soon they be getting their primary produce.