How much risk is there of Kiwibank being sold off? How does Aussiebank sound?
Kiwibank started in 2002 due to a coalition agreement between Labour and the Alliance Party. It was a major policy success by Jim Anderton, and the bank has been a major success for Kiwis. Jim Anderton retires from parliament this year. His Alliance Party is winding up. Who will champion the Kiwi’s bank once Jim is gone?
Does National want to sell off Kiwibank?
An embarrassing recording of National Party deputy leader Bill English in private conversation has surfaced. He suggests National will sell Kiwibank “eventually, but not now”.
Mr English said last night he could not recall having a conversation with anyone about Kiwibank. But he said National had pledged not to sell Kiwibank in its first term of office and that policy was unchanged.
Their first term is just about over.
Finance Minister Bill English has signalled the Government is again considering partial state asset sales – including Kiwibank.
A good example was Kiwibank, English said. It had got to a size where it needed either a government guarantee or ”an awful lot of capital”.
”So one option would be to go to the market and raise capital. So keep crown ownership, majority crown ownership and raise the rest of the capital from the market. So who’d buy into that.”
Obviously there is support in National for selling Kiwibank . And we are just about at the end of their first term – so what will they do next term? There is increasing pressure on National from the right to be much bolder with policies like asset sales.
If the next government is an Act-National coalition there will be even more pressure on government to sell assets like Kiwibank.
What’s the best way to protect Kiwibank once Jim Anderton is not there to stand up for it?
UnitedFuture has always supported Kiwibank, and will continue to support Kiwibank. A significant UnitedFuture presence in parliament, and a continued presence of UnitedFuture in government, will provide a continued safeguard for Kiwibank.