3rd November 2016 Media Statement
- It ‘did not clearly identify that the Al Khalaf Group would own the goods and services costing the NZ Government $6m’
- ‘did not identify how the $10m figure was arrived at’, which we now know included spending $1million on flying sheep to Saudi Arabia.
- ‘signalled the risk of a claim against the Government based only on the $20-$30 million figure that the Cabinet paper said was suggested by the Al Khalaf Group (there was no assessment by the Ministry officials of the substance of that legal risk)’
2 November 2016 Media Statement
- Solid Energy’s December 2008 debt of $31 million (5 per cent of assets) had risen to $375 million (41.6 per cent of assets) by December 2012.
- Denied their pressure on Solid Energy to increase indebtedness to 40 per cent caused increased dividends and higher debt.
- Still asserted their pressure, as owners of Solid Energy, to increase dividends and debt was prudent.
- Refused to accept it was imprudent to reject the warning from then Chair John Palmer against high debt for a coal commodity company like Solid Energy.
- Could not or would not confirm the total loss to shareholders and lenders to Solid Energy, even to within a hundred million dollars.
November 1 2016 Media Statement
Solid Energy debacle a sad indictment of Government incompetence
The liquidation of Solid Energy is a sad indictment of Government incompetence, which has destroyed the once valuable company, says Labour’s spokesperson on State Owned Enterprises David Parker.
“Today’s announcement of the sale of the company’s coal mines represents the culmination of the inept direction of Solid Energy by National.
“National Government Ministers told Solid Energy they had to pay higher dividends and embark on more risky ventures with no extra capital.
“They were even warned by Solid Energy’s Chairman in writing at the time that the extra debt being incurred was very risky. The National Government told them as shareholders, however, to go ahead regardless.
“Now National’s chickens have come home to roost. The SOE’s mines, once a public asset, are now being sold to Bathurst Resources, the Talley group and Birchfield Coal Mines Limited.
“We wish the new owners and their workers well, but record our dismay at this debacle.
“This sorry saga has cost many hundreds of jobs, and damaged communities across the country. It has cost taxpayers and banks billions of dollars in losses, “says David Parker.
31 October 2016 Media Statement
21 October 2016 Media Statement
29 September 2016 Media Statement
This government has dumped bad news on a Friday to try to avoid political scrutiny in Parliament, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker.
“Heron QC is to be thanked for a fearless report.
“After years of denials of problems, and attacks on those who made criticisms, the first independent report has turned up serious wrongdoing.
“The report says the cover-up of widespread quota fraud in the industry by senior enforcement personnel was partly caused by concern for their own reputation, after they earlier failed to enforce the law.
“New CEO Dunne is not at fault, but is wrong to say it is time to move on.
“The question of why there was systemic failure in the upper echelons of Ministry for Primary Industries enforcement has still not been properly answered.
“It is fair to question whether the Ministry is too close to the Fishing industry and have put commercial needs well ahead of environmental bottom lines.
“There are also serious questions about the actions of a number of officials over a long period and this needs to be investigated.
“The QMS population modelling used to assess remaining fish stocks may also be wrong, given that it was based on lower than actual catch data. There are many questions yet to be answered, David Parker says.
16 September 2016 Media Statement