“Its [Alpha Burn Stn’s] sole shareholder was American billionaire Peter Thiel, the Libertarian futurist who had become a New Zealand citizen, unbeknownst to almost everyone, after spending 12 days in the country, which allowed him to buy the land without approval from the Overseas Investment Office.”
This is indicative of Agenda 2030. See our articles on privatisation (use the search box), public private partnerships and Agenda 21/30. Also, see our Local Govt Watch pages at the main menu particularly Mangawhai and Horowhenua. See where the privatising (aka selling off) of the family silver began. NZ is fast disappearing down the gurgler I’m afraid. Following is a mainstream article.
“We’re talking about 10 per cent of the country. And even if it weren’t [that much land], it’s been done behind closed doors, and people should be concerned about that.”
We’ve paid $65m to get rid of some of our most treasured landscapes, through an obscure process critics have described as a vast wave of privatisation. Wealthy foreigners are snapping up valuable land once owned by the public, who in some cases paid to dispose of it. As gated estates and manicured golf courses spread through our wild places, Charlie Mitchell investigates:
Who owns the high country?
ALPHA BURN STATION
“Thousands of people each year make the pilgrimage along this narrow and dusty path, which twists through a bushy terrace overlooking a lake in the heart of New Zealand’s high country.
It is a landscape millions of years in the making, composed by the rise and fall of ancient glaciers, a place where colours converge; the lake’s deep shade of cerulean, the muted and sun-tinged tussocks of gentle hills, the colossal white peak of Mt Aspiring…
The land was ultimately privatised, without protection. About 18 months later, it was sold to a group of wealthy developers, among them Sky TV founder Craig Heatley, one of the country’s wealthiest men. They sought to subdivide the land for six houses, which did not come to fruition, in part due to vigorous opposition from local advocacy groups…
…the new buyer was particularly objectionable.
It was a company called Second Star Ltd, seemingly an homage to Peter Pan: the mythical paradise of Neverland is the “second star to the right” in the Disney adaptation.
Its sole shareholder was American billionaire Peter Thiel, the Libertarian futurist who had become a New Zealand citizen, unbeknownst to almost everyone, after spending 12 days in the country, which allowed him to buy the land without approval from the Overseas Investment Office.”
READ MORE AT THE LINK:
Photo: Glendhu Bay, Wikipedia
Glendhu Bay now the site of a golf course
VIDEO: Privatisation in NZ explained
FURTHER UPDATE FROM THE STANDARD:
High Country selloff scandal laid bare
Written By: – Date published: 2:11 pm, January 21st, 2018 – 32 comments
Categories: Conservation, farming, labour, national, Privatisation – Tags: foreign ownership
A feature in yesterday’s Domion Post Weekend lays bare the extent of the scandalous selloff of huge tracts of our high country.
Charlie Mitchell’s report details how the tenure review of the high country has been conducted since it began in 1992 when many leasehold farms became uneconomic and a process was established to review the leaseholds by privatising some of the land and bringing parts into the conservation estate. The process has been followed by both National and Labour governments.
Mitchell’s article reveals:
- The review covers over 2 million hectares of land, some 10 percent of the whole country, an area larger than the state of Israel
- Tenure reviews since 1998 show that the taxpayer has paid nearly $65 million to privatise land it owned which in some cases has been sold for huge capital gains
- The public has surrendered all rights to 430,000ha of the high country’s most productive land, parts of which have become luxury retreats, gated developments, tourism ventures, intensively farmed land or billionaire’s playgrounds
- Around 14 percent of the privatised land has some form of covenant.
- Much of the process has been secretive and not open to public scrutiny
- Much of land was originally bought from Maori through a series of “meagre” payments for which
- Maori were promised reserves and access to resources – promises that were broken by the Crown
Around 14 percent of the privatised land has some form of covenant
- Key sales to foreign buyers required no Overseas Investment Office review
- Alpha Burn Station a few minutes from Wanaka and with 5.5km of Lake Wanaka shoreline, saw 190ha of prime property privatised without public protection for a net $50,000. It was resold almost immediately to rich lister Craig Heatley for $10.6 million, who after failing to win a subdivision battle, resold it to US billionaire, libertarian, and Trump adviser, Peter Theil, for $13.5 million. The capital gain computes at 37,000 percent, none of which is taxable
- The taxpayer paid $5000 to privatise Glendhu Station. Now in three parts, one part has been sold with a partly finished golf course on it, for $16.7 million; another part is valued at $8.5 million and a third at $3.4 million.
- One family owned Alpha Burn and Glendhu Stations, collectively paying $45,000 for 6000ha of Wanaka lakefront that today is valued at $45million.
- An analysis by an author on the subject, Ann Bower, published in 2015 found the median capital gain of sales after tenure reviews was 69,200 percent
- Across all tenure reviews since 1998, land valued at $320 million was bought by farmers for $143m, while land valued at $78m was purchased by the Crown for $208m
- A furore over the sale of Richmond Station on the shore of Lake Tekapo caused the Clark Labour government to suspend the reviews, but the Key National government restarted the process in 2009, with then Conservation Minister Kate Wilkinson saying the Crown didn’t need more conservation land
- As recently as May, the leaseholders of Airies Station in Burkes Pass purchased the whole station freehold for $2.8 million, and the Crown paid out the same amount to cancel the payment. A quarter of the land was covenanted but no public access was granted.