A Tale of Two Ports

Port of Tauranga has cracked the $100M net profit mark for the first time, underlining how efficient it has become as NZ’s largest port. The NZX-listed Mount Maunganui-based company also reported this week its long-term credit rating had been elevated from ‘BBB+’ to ‘A-‘ by credit rating agency Standard & Poors. The short-term rating was affirmed at ‘A-2’.

PoT’s market capitalisation hit $4.3bn in the wake of its latest result, a huge leap from the $78m at the time of its IPO in 1992. The company has provided a river of gold for the Bay of Plenty Regional Council, which retains 56% of the shares.

So why have other local bodies, which own ports, been so slow to follow the example of the BOP Council in partially privatising their port businesses and reaping the rewards?

Continue reading “A Tale of Two Ports”

Democracy – a farm leader says it could be dangerous and iwi leaders want it weakened

Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen, vowing that her country would continue to increase defence spending, develop its indigenous defense industry and work with like-minded partners to contribute to regional peace and security, further said:

“We can work together to ensure that future global security won’t be determined by military or economic might. Instead, it will be guided by the values of freedom and democracy.”   

But buying into this democracy stuff is a challenge for some New Zealand groups.  In Canterbury, a farm leader is concerned about the prospect of “dangerous” consequences from regional council elections.  In Hawke’s Bay, some iwi leaders would prefer to be governed locally by regional council commissioners appointed by authorities in Wellington who share power with them. Continue reading “Democracy – a farm leader says it could be dangerous and iwi leaders want it weakened”