Home' Greymouth Star : March 12th 2014 Contents Greymouth Star
Justice Minister Judith Collins
has revealed she had a dinner with
the head of Oravida and a senior
Chinese government o cial while in
China last year and admits she was
wrong not to disclose the dinner last
Mrs Collins has been under
pressure to explain her dealings with
the milk company Oravida, where
her husband is a director, and this
morning said she was told to reveal
the dinner by Prime Minister
John Key's chief of sta Wayne
Mrs Collins held a media stand
up at Parliament this morning and
said she had a discussion with Mr
Eagleson last night and told him
of the dinner in Beijing with Stone
Shi and Julia Shu --- "very very close
personal friends" --- who are also
Oravida's bosses. Also in attendance
was a senior Chinese border
control o cial who was a friend of
Mr Shi and Ms Shu. Ms Collins
also disclosed she had attended a
luncheon with Mr Shi and Ms Shu
earlier the same day.
Mr Eagleson quizzed Ms Collins
on her visit last night after Mr Key
acknowledged that Ms Collins
"promoted" but did not endorse
Oravida's products when she visited
its Shanghai o ces at the end of her
She said in hindsight she could
also have treated the dinner as part
of the o cial business of the trip,
rather than a private event.
However she continued to
maintain there was no con ict of
interest in her meetings with Mr Shi
or visit to Oravida.
She denied that the dinner would
have been of assistance to Oravida.
Mrs Collins' policy advisor was also
at the dinner. She would not say who
paid for it, but said it was not her or
"It would have been better if I had
not treated it like a private dinner,
which it was, but had actually
reported it through."
"Wayne said to me, and he was
quite right, that I should have told
you that last week.
"I'm wrong I should have
broadened it out."
"If anyone feels that I've done
something wrong then I would
apologise for that because I should
have told you that last week."
To tell reporters and the public she
had got something wrong was "not
my natural state of a airs", she said.
A spokeswoman for Mr Key
con rmed he met with Ms Collins
this morning "and expressed his
disappointment that the Minister
had not advised him earlier of the
dinner in China".
" e Prime Minister considers
that the cumulative e ect of the
interaction with Oravida in China
may give rise to the perception of a
con ict of interest. It was unwise for
the Minister to have put herself in
this position, and the Prime Minister
has made it clear to Ms Collins
that she needs to better manage any
situation that could give rise to such
Labour leader David Cunli e said
Mr Key should stand Ms Collins
down "while he gets to the bottom
of her secret meetings with Chinese
border o cials, her policy advisor
and the Chinese managing director
of her husband's company Oravida".
"Judith Collins has been forced to
admit she hasn't told the whole
truth about her visit to China last
"Now we learn she not only visited
Oravida and endorsed its product,
but she also had lunch and dinner
with the company's boss Stone Shi.
is dinner was also attended by
a Chinese border o cial and her
Mr Cunli e said the presence of
a Chinese border o cial, "raises
serious questions about the minister
facilitating access for products
supplied to Oravida by Sanfords; a
company partly owned by the family
of National Party President Peter
"New Zealanders will be
dumbfounded these meetings
weren't revealed earlier. John Key is
well aware how bad this looks. is
belated admission of favours for the
big end of town is business as usual
for the National Party."
--- APNZ-New Zealand Herald
Wednesday, March 12, 2014 - 3
A man has been arrested in relation
to the armed robbery of a jewellery
store in central Wellington on
Monday. Police said the man was
arrested overnight in Porirua, and is
in police custody. Wellington CIB is
investigating. --- APNZ
Fire investigators are looking into
the causes of res in Timaru and
Christchurch overnight. Fire crews
were called to a house in Aynsley
Street, Timaru, about 7.45pm after
a car caught re inside a garage.
Southern re communications shift
manager Karl Patterson said the re
was well involved when crews from
Timaru and Washdyke arrived.
No one was injured. e Fire Service
also received multiple 111 calls about
a house re in Mattingley Street,
Aranui about 1am today. No one was
inside the single-storey house, Mr
ree injured in crash
ree people are seriously
injured following a crash north
of Wellington this morning.
e incident happened on State
highway 2 between Totara Park
and Gibbons Street in Upper Hutt
just before 6.30am, senior sergeant
Marc Clausen of central police
communications said. Initially one
car crashed and then there was a
minor nose to tail accident involving
vehicles slowing down for the rst
crash. ree people were in a serious
condition from the rst crash.
ere were no reported injuries
from the second crash, Mr Clausen
said. e Police Serious Crash Unit
attended the scene.
Man airlifted after
touching power lines
A man has been taken to hospital
after su ering an electric shock when
he touched overhead power lines.
Taupo's Greenlea Rescue Helicopter
was called to a rural address outside
Benneydale on Monday afternoon.
A man in his 50s had been working
on the roof of a shed when he
was believed to have touched the
overhead lines. He had a signi cant
gash to his head and what appeared
to be a small exit wound from the
electricity on the bottom of his foot.
A 41-year-old Ukrainian sherman
with acute appendicitis was airlifted
to Nelson Hospital after falling ill
aboard the shing boat
FV Irvinga, 25 nautical miles north
of Farewell Spit yesterday. e
Rescue Co-ordination Centre was
alerted about 11.30am, after a doctor
aboard the vessel decided urgent
medical treatment was required,
and the Nelson Marlborough rescue
helicopter was directed to the ship's
location. --- APNZ
$NZ KIWI DOLLAR ($NZ1)
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Trading to 10:30am,
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
RISERS: 13 DECLINERS: 27 TRADED: 76
Aluminium High Grade 1,715.00 1,729.50
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ree convicted Bridgecorp
directors have reached an
$18.9 million settlement with the
failed nance company's receivers.
Bridgecorp's receivers, PwC had
led a $320 million claim against
directors Bruce Davidson, Peter
Steigrad and Gary Ur win for
alleged breach of duties, but have
now settled that case.
It followed the July 2007 collapse
of Bridgecorp, which at the time
owed $459m owing to 14,500
investors. e deal will let the
receiver pay an interim distribution
of 4 cents in the dollar, which is
expected to be made in March,
taking total recoveries to 12 cents
in the dollar.
PwC had already pursued
managing director Rod Petricevic
and chief nancial o cer Rob
Roest to bankruptcy.
e settlement involved insurers
QBE, which the directors had a
insurance policy with a limit of
In announcing the $18.9m
settlement, receiver Colin McCloy
said it "was a very good result".
" e contributions from
Bridgecorp's insurers and the
individual directors were negotiated
on the basis of available assets,
and taking into consideration the
delays and cost of taking the matter
to Court. is was the key factor
in reaching a decision, along with
balancing the time, costs and risks
associated with ongoing litigation
when compared to the certain
outcome today," said McCloy.
As part of the deal between the
directors and the receivers, the
Financial Markets Authority ---
which had lined up its own civil
claim against Bridgecorp's board
members --- will discontinue its
FMA head of enforcement,
Belinda Mo at, said the decision to
discontinue these proceedings "were
not taken lightly".
"We assessed the public interest in
continuing with the claim, and after
considering the personal nancial
position of the directors and the
settlement sum achieved by the
receivers, and the fact that FMA
would not be able to achieve a
greater recovery, it was clear that it
would not have been an appropriate
use of taxpayers' money to proceed,"
"Our claim would have gone after
the same pool of funds that the
receiver has reached a settlement
on, so there was little, if any, money
left to pursue.
"It was also our view that the
custodial sentences handed down
in the criminal trial had sent a very
strong deterrence message to the
market which continues to be felt
today," Mo at said.
Ur win was jailed for two
years after pleading guilty to
10 Securities Act charges for
Davidson pleaded guilty to similar
charges and was sentenced in 2011
to nine months' home detention,
200 hours' community work and
paid $500,000 in reparations.
Steigrad went to trial --- with
Petricevic and Roest --- and was
found guilty of six Securities Act
charges and was sentenced to nine
months of home detention, 200
hours of community work and pay
$350,000 in reparations.
In the case, brought by the FMA,
Petricevic and Roest were both
jailed for six years and six months.
--- New Zealand Herald
ree Bridgecorp directors reach $18.9m settlement
PICTURE: New Zealand Herald
Bridgecorp directors Rod Petricevic and Robert Roest in the dock.
AC/DC drummer Phil Rudd's
Tauranga restaurant will struggle to
be back in black after he was ordered
to pay three former employees more
than $72,000 for wrongfully sacking
An Employment Relations
Authority decision has ruled for the
employees --- kitchenhand Alice
Kiwa and chefs Janelle Kiwa and
Hayden Clark --- after the 59-year-
old musician tried to drum them out
of Phil's Place in July 2012.
One evening, Rudd had asked
for an antipasto platter to be sent
to his boat, but his security guard
redirected the meal to the aircraft
When his meal didn't show up,
a furious Rudd returned to the
restaurant and kicked the back
door yelling: "Where is my f*****
meal", "you're all f***** useless" and
"you're all f***** red."
Two days later, Melbourne-born
Rudd arranged for his accountant
to apologise to the trio for his
behaviour. He only apologised in
person 18 months later.
Around the same time the
accountant was apologising, sta
were told the struggling restaurant
would close for winter and they had
e trio took Rudd to the ERA,
where he unsuccessfully tried to keep
his name out of the public domain.
In her decision released this week,
ERA member Tania Tetitaha ruled
the three were permanent employees
because of their work history, rather
than casual sta .
Rudd, who claimed he did not
know what redundancy was, told
the ERA he closed the restaurant
because of concerns about sta theft,
long waiting times for meals and the
playing unauthorised music.
He did not o er any nancial
records to show the restaurant was
Ms Tetitaha ruled they were
unjusti ably dismissed.
She awarded them thousands each
in lost wages and compensation
of $15,000 each because Rudd's
behaviour had been scary and
intimidating and the trio had
variously su ered depression, been
made homeless and subject to false
accusations of theft.
She also ordered the restaurant to
pay their legal costs of $8500.
Rudd's total bill was $72,600.
He now leases the restaurant
premises to another party.
Earlier this month, Rudd was
cleared of lying about a cannabis
conviction when applying for his
private helicopter pilot's licence.
AC/DC drummer all screwed up over sackings
Oil company Anadarko will not
con rm claims its exploration o the
Otago coast has been unsuccessful.
Greenpeace said leaked information
showed the company had found only
hard rock granite, schist and clay.
Anadarko's New Zealand manager
Alan Seay would not con rm or
deny the reports but told Radio
New Zealand the company was
still analysing information from the
"We're in the very early stages of
what they call logging, which is what
they call gathering the information
from the well, and it's way too early
to draw any conclusions at this stage,"
"I'm being told that we're conducting
the logging, we're gathering the
information, and it's going to take
quite a few months to do the analysis
and to work out what the next steps
Seay said planning for a second well
in Otago was still in place, "but it was
always a long shot".
RNZ reported the Ministry of
Business, Innovation and Employment
had not received noti cation of an
intention to drill a second hole or
hydrocarbons being found.
Dougall Roberts of Roberts Oil told
RNZ he felt the Greenpeace claim
was a bit "bogus".
" ese are enormous, enormous areas
to consider when you're looking for ...
a de ned resource.
"I think there's more work to go."
Roberts said the prospects for
nding oil in the area were still good.
Anadarko did not nd commercial
quantities of oil or natural gas in its
drilling in the Taranaki Basin last year.
PICTURE: New Zealand Herald
Workers on board the Noble Bob Douglas drilling ship.
Anadarko will not say
if Otago exploration
e remnants of Tropical Cyclone
Lusi are on track to hit New Zealand
this weekend, forecasters say, with the
North Island likely to bear the brunt
of the storm.
A "stunning" week will be followed
by a weekend of heavy rain and severe
gales as the weather system arrives
to batter the country on Friday or
It's likely to pass over Auckland
on Saturday night and into Sunday
morning, Weather Watch head
analyst Philip Duncan said.
While it would no longer be
classi ed as a tropical cyclone by
the time it reached New Zealand, it
would still "pack a punch", he said.
"We expect it will move in around
Saturday or Sunday and it could
bring very heavy rain and severe gales
to northern New Zealand, and across
the weekend it will a ect all of the
North Island at some point," Mr
However, it is not yet known which
part of the country will be worst hit
by the tropical storm.
"A lot of the weather around this
low will be just your normal cloudy,
windy sort of stu , it won't be severe.
But the worst of the weather is the
centre part where the worst of the
wind will be and some of the heaviest
rain will be. at's the area we're
watching very closely and are yet to
work out speci cally where it will go,"
Mr Duncan said.
MetService meteorologist Dan
Corbett agreed, saying it was looking
like a "batten down the hatches"
weekend, which could get "quite
nasty in some places".
"Certainly northern New Zealand,
so Northland to Auckland to the
Bay of Plenty, through Saturday, it
will certainly be spells of heavy rain,
strong winds, gales --- maybe even
severe gales," he forecast.
" en the actual centre of that
low, that's still a little bit di cult
to determine exactly where, but it
does look like it's tracking towards
northern New Zealand for late
Friday into Saturday."
Both Mr Duncan and Mr Corbett
said the picture of where the storm
is likely to go will get clearer as the
week goes on, and were hopeful that
by tomorrow they would have a better
idea of where the centre would strike.
Tropical Cyclone Lusi was currently
a category one cyclone sitting near
Vanuatu, and was "slowly intensifying
in the very warm, bath-like waters" in
the Paci c which fuels such storms,
said Mr Corbett.
It is likely to grow into a category
three cyclone within 24 hours, he
said, and track to the south and west
By the weekend it will reach New
Zealand waters, where the cooler
temperatures will have the e ect of
"someone pulling the plug".
"It will be weakening as it comes
towards us, but it will have already
become quite strong," Mr Corbett
said. --- APNZ
Tropical cyclone remnants tracking towards NZ
Mortgage brokers are urging borrowers
to x the interest rates on their loans
and say it is not too late despite an
expected increase in the o cial cash rate
e Reserve Bank of New Zealand
is widely expected to increase the rate
from 2.5% to 2.75% after years of being
Floating interest rates and short-term
rates of less than 18 months are expected
to rise with the cash rate, pushing the
standard oating rate from around
5.75% to 6%.
Mortgage broker Bruce Patten said he
had seen a rush of people wanting to x
loans in the past three weeks.
"Every man and his dog is scrambling
to either x rates or break their existing
Mr Patten said the biggest factor
people should take into account when
deciding whether to x or oat their
mortgage was a ordability.
"People need to understand what rate
they can a ord. If they can a ord to pay
6% now lock it in for three years."
Mr Patten said most people favoured
xing their mortgage for two years but
his view was that it was better to go for
three years to give a bit more "breathing
e o cial cash rate is expected to
increase by a full percentage point to
3.5% by the end of the year which could
send oating rates to around 7%.
Broker Karen Tatterson, a board
member on the Professional Advisers
Association, said it was not too late to
"People still have a chance to x on
ursday or Friday."
Ms Tatterson said most banks would
give a 24-hour timeframe for a customer
to go with a rate when it was o ered.
She said the best rates to x on were
two and three-year rates.
Banks were o ering around 5.95% for
two years xed and 6.2-6.35% to x for
Ms Tatterson said it was still possible
to negotiate interest rates with banks
but those with a deposit or equity of less
than 20% had little chance of getting a
Some people were weighing up the
cost of getting a valuation done on their
house to try to see if they could improve
their equity position and get a better
But she said xing was not right for
ose who were expecting to move
house soon or expecting a lump sum
payment could be better o oating
or having a portion on oating.
--- APNZ-New Zealand Herald
Grab low rates,
'I was wrong'
Cunliffe calls for Key to stand down minister
Members of a board which
yesterday agreed to halve funding
to the Auckland Rescue Helicopter
Trust could nd themselves in court
after the trust said it may target
individuals in a legal bid to overturn
Financial backing for the rescue
helicopter is set to be slashed
by $450,000 after the Auckland
Regional Amenities Funding Board
voted to implement the cut for the
next nancial year.
Yesterday's further reduction
would mean the trust would receive
$450,000 for the 2014-15 year.
It has vowed to take the board to
court over the funding decision --- a
week after both sides appeared for a
judicial review in the High Court in
Auckland as the trust challenged last
"As a result of yesterday's decision
we will be suing them for the
2014-15 year. We will be suing them
as an entity and we will be exploring
with our lawyers the possibilities
of suing them as individuals,"
a spokesman for the helicopter
"We are not prepared to tolerate
this any longer, this matter will have
to be resolved in the courts again.
And we will keep suing them until
Vern Walsh, chairman of the
amenities board, said the decision
would now go to Auckland Council
to be approved. --- APNZ
Rescue helicopter trust to sue board over funding cut
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