OIO must be tough over Silver Fern Farms sale

The Overseas Investment Office must take a hard line over the possible controlling stake in Silver Fern Farms by a Chinese company, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash.

“While this isn’t a direct farm sale, Silver Ferns Farms is a major player in our biggest industry. If control of the company goes offshore it may impact on New Zealand’s farming industry ability to act in our wider export interests.

“It is important that any deal is in our wider economic interests. It’s the OIO’s job to make sure that happens.

“Since 2008 the OIO has never turned down an application from an overseas buyer to buy farmland. There is also no record of whether those buyers have delivered on their applications. That’s not good enough.

“The OIO needs to be tougher. The value being promised by the overseas investors must turn into a reality,” says Stuart Nash.

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