Thanks Paula and Louise, you’ve scared off investors, well done

Shanghai Pengxin has decided to can another farm purchase because of the inane decision of Paula Bennett and Louise Upston.

Another person’s private property rights and value has been eroded due to their idiocy.

A Chinese company has withdrawn from an agreement to buy 10 farms in Northland for about $42.7 million, citing delays and uncertainty from the government?s Overseas Investment Office.

Dakang New Zealand Farm Group, which is 55% owned by Shanghai Pengxin, this morning confirmed the deal was off.

The company had signed a sale and purchase agreement to buy seven dairy farms and three support farms in the Mangakahia Valley district just south of Kaikohe from Mervyn and Cara Pinny.

Dakang ?[SZ:002505] chief executive Gary Romano says the decision to cancel was partly based on the government?s decision to veto Pengxin?s purchase of Lochinver Station last month.

?We lodged an application with the Overseas Investment Office (OIO) in April 2015 believing five months would be sufficient time to enable a rigorous and objective review of our plans for the farms, compared to the 70 working day guideline the OIO has for turning around applications,? Mr Romano says. ?? Read more »

Photo Of The Day

Photo: Opium Museum  Americans smoke opium in a Chinese-run opium den in New York City's Chinatown in 1925.

Photo: Opium Museum
Americans smoke opium in a Chinese-run opium den in New York City’s Chinatown in 1925.

Opium Dens

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Sounds suspiciously like Labour has “cash for access” schemes running as well


Items for auction at Labour fundraiser

Once again Labour has been caught out by their own hypocrisy.

In the series of rolling stories about Labour’s own donations scams the Herald’s Jared Savage covers the murky world of Steven Ching..and his very own “cash for access” system of fundraising.

The man who hoped to be the first Chinese MP for the Labour Party has emerged as a central figure in the donation claims of Donghua Liu.

Steven Ching was a successful fundraiser for Labour and was No42 on the party list ahead of the 2005 election, but withdrew.

The Herald can now reveal that the Auckland businessman, who organised dinners where guests donated $1000 to sit beside former Prime Minister Helen Clark, approached the office of David Cunliffe about Liu’s residency bid.

Mr Ching was not home and did not return messages, but Labour sources confirmed he was the “conduit” between Liu and the party.

When the Herald broke the news that Mr Cunliffe wrote a 2003 letter on behalf of Liu’s residency bid, the Labour leader said he did not recall having ever met the businessman.

“To the best of my knowledge that letter came through my office and an immigration agent on his behalf.”

Mr Cunliffe this week said “to the best of my knowledge” Mr Ching was not that agent. “However he appears to have had some contact at staff level with the New Lynn Electorate Office over the matter.”

Labour sources said Mr Ching had links to Liu and became the “conduit” between the party and the millionaire businessman. “Ching was the ‘money man’ responsible for organising the fundraising dinners and established a good relationship with Liu,” said one.

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A book and now a bottle of wine, what else has Donghua Liu donated to Labour that is undeclared

The rumours of the expensive bottle of wine bought by Donghua Liu appear to be true with a photograph surfacing of a beaming Rick Barker handing over the bottle to Juan Zhang the partner of Donghua Liu.

We don’t yet know how much he donated for the wine, but it is looking increasingly like Labour has filed false donations returns…for at least two items.

A Labour Cabinet Minister presented a bottle of wine to the partner of businessman Donghua Liu at a fundraiser for the party.

The Herald has obtained a photograph of Rick Barker with Juan Zhang, who has two children with Liu, after he won an auction for the bottle at an Auckland restaurant in June 2007.

It is not known how much Liu paid for the wine – believed to be signed by then-Prime Minister Helen Clark – and Mr Barker said he presented auction prizes several times at Labour fundraisers.

He was the Minister for Internal Affairs at the time, and visited Liu in his hometown of Chongqing in China earlier that year, although he did not know Liu was a donor to Labour.

Two sources have told the Herald that Liu paid $15,000 at an auction in 2007 for a book signed by Helen Clark.

Labour general secretary Tim Barnett said a check of the party’s records showed no donation from Liu under his name.

Could Labour now face prosecution the same way John Banks was prosecuted…for filing false donations.

The amount paid for that bottle of wine is reported to be high 5 figures.

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Groucho Marx’s Labour party


This accurately sums up the state of the Labour party.

You can see the evidence of this in their ham-fisted attacks and smears on Judith Collins and now John Key. Aided by their pals in the compliant media, like Patrick Gower and Corin Dann they really are making a mockery of politics, their party and journalism.

The excuse making and justifications of Gower’s recent behaviour in Shanghai, by journalists like Russell Brown, just make that sort of scurrilous reporting available to all.

I look forward to Patrick Gower invading the office of Selwyn Pellett and rummaging his drawers, fridge and bookshelves looking for evidence of his cozy relationship with Labour and the unions. Of course that won’t happen.

Since the departure of Helen Clark the party has been stagnant, and now since the arrival of the entirely false and contrived David Cunliffe in freefall in the polls. The current state of the Labour party can be sheeted home entirely to the legacy of Helen Clark.? Read more »

Why the Labour party is going after Judith Collins…its all about the money

The Labour party is going after Judith Collins and many outside of the broadcast wing of the LAbour party in TVNZ and the beltway are perplexed as to why this is important or even relevant.

Well it all comes to money….union money.

Labour has an election to fight and the cozy little rort that once existed at ACC is about to close for good and Labour is short of cash, specifically union cash.

Judith Collins is the reason why that rort is closing whereby unions would get money from ACC for running courses and basically redistribute that cash back to the Labour party via donations.? Read more »

Women Don’t Pay For Dinner In China

I have been living in Hong Kong and have travelled throughout Asia on business now for some nine years.

Even when I am going out with clients and I have invited them, Chinese men will never let you pay for anything.

If you are a woman travelling to Shanghai or Beijing ?on business there is no New Zealand style pathetic equality driven “splitting” of the bill. ? Read more »

Chinese ratbags stirring up a donnybrook

The Chinese are getting all belligerent at the moment, stirring up a fair bit of trouble and as is usual blaming it all on other nations.

Liu Xiaoming, China?s ambassador to London, launches a strong criticism of the Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, accusing him of deliberately raising tensions in Asia and putting the world on a ?perilous path?.

Japan risks a ?serious threat to global peace? by ?rekindling? the militaristic spirit that helped cause the Second World War, a senior Chinese official has warned.

Liu Xiaoming, China?s ambassador to London, has launched a strong criticism of the Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, accusing him of deliberately raising tensions in Asia and putting the world on a ?perilous path?.

Writing in The Daily Telegraph, Mr Liu warns that under Mr Abe, Japan is seeking to rewrite the history of its role in the war and restore its status as an aggressive military power. China ?will not allow? such plans, he said.

In unusually vivid language, Mr Liu even compares modern Japan to Lord Voldemort, the villain of the Harry Potter stories who eventually ?dies hard?. The ambassador appealed to Britain to side with China against Japan in the escalating row between Beijing and Tokyo, invoking Britain?s role fighting against Japan in the war. ? Read more »

How about that Capital Gains Tax huh?

Check out this programme from Al Jazeera about housing affordability.

From London to Sao Paulo, Shanghai to Sydney, we are witnessing another property bubble, just after the worst financial crisis the world has seen since the 1930s.

This week on?Counting the Cost, we look at property – not just at prices and bubbles and mortgages, but the idea of where people are buying and living, where they cannot buy and live and all the social and economic factors which take people in and out of home ownership.

Owning a house is something a lot of people aspire to along with family and a job, it is kind of one of life bedrocks.

After the worst financial crisis in more than 70 years, house prices are in many cases rising faster than the economy. In the US, the average home value is now within just 7 percent of the pre-crisis peak, which was $230,400 in July 2006.

In Sydney, Australia average house prices surged 13 percent to $718,122 in the first three quarters of 2013. ? Read more »

There is plenty of affordable housing, it’s just all in China

People go on and on about affordable housing…there is plenty available…it is just all in China where there are hundreds of thousands of empty homes just waiting for occupiers.

Wait! There’s an idea…let’s ship out the underclass to go live in China.

Over the last two years of traveling constantly in China, I can say that I have not seen a single city, town, or hamlet without massive empty housing stock. A colleague, on two trips crossing about 1,500 kilometers overland, said that he was not out of sight of empty buildings even once. Up by the Siberian border, the town of Manzhouli has decided to become a tourist resort and built thousands of empty ?villa? developments. In the southern mountains of Yunnan, a colleague took video footage of 15 kilometers unbroken of empty highrises. The ghost developments stretch along Beijing?s southern Fourth Ring and through Shanghai?s Pudong and Xuhui. The East District Zhengzhou looks like a post-apocalyptic landscape. The new districts of Harbin could earn some revenue as sets for a remake of?I Am Legend. ? Read more »