• govt set to buy track back in New Zealand

  • Discussion about railroad topics everywhere outside of North America.
Discussion about railroad topics everywhere outside of North America.

Moderators: Komachi, David Benton

  by David Benton
After years of neglect , toll rail just doesnt have the trained staff and equipment to handle the upgrade work been paid for by the government .

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/busi ... ubsection=

I think there will be either a callback of early retirement workers , contracting out of work to private companies , or bringing in of overseas workers / companies to undertake some of the work .

  by David Benton
abit of background to the take over of tranzrail , and who was interested in buying Tranzrail .
To be honest i cant make heads or tails of it , badly written i thought , but it may be of interest .

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/busi ... ction=rail

  by george matthews
I think what is happening everywhere is that political fashions sweep round the world. In Britain we had Thatcherism - hostile to state ownership of anything. In NZ you had "Rogernomics" brought in, bizarrely, by the Labour Party.

In reality it does not seem that modern rail systems flourish in private ownership. They should be regarded as more like the highway system. The taxpayer will always need to support rail services.

In Britain these payments should be regarded as being made for services rendered. These include: lessening of congestion on parallel roads, less air pollution.

Everyone should study the history of Railtrack which was privatised, collapsed and is now nationalised in reality though not in name. Now that the dogma of "privatise everything" is less and less believed in it is becoming possible to see that rail industry cannot be a completely unfettered private business, especially while there are benefits to society that cannot be collected at the booking office or anywhere else. The taxpayer supplies them. Perhaps the motorist pays for his easier ride on the highway by contributing towards rail.
Last edited by george matthews on Thu Oct 07, 2004 5:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

  by David Benton
The railways corporation sale was probably the worst of the privatization's of the rogernomics period . Yes it was a labour government , but the country had been run by an almost dicatotorial Mouldoon , who tired to fix the economy by regulating almost every single price / service / exchange rate etc .
The thing was , the government owned railways corporation had done most of the hard work usually undertaken by privatization . mainly in the form of reducing the work force , from around 20 000 to 5000 . nz rail , as it was sold was in good condition , and a bargain at around $ 300 million .
then came the sale , unbeliveably ( but little known to the public including myself ) to a consortuim led by NZ company , Fay Ritchwaite , and backed mainly by American wisconisin central . That Fay ritchwaite was the governments advisor on the sale process was not publicy discussed , and the obvious conflict of interest was not challenged as it should of been . while public mistrust was of the american partners, it was the Nz company that borrowed money to buy thier share , and then sold rails assets to pay back the loans . in the process getting thier shares for virtually nothing . as any student of railway operation would know , asset stripping is probably the worst thing you can do . Most problems since have been caused by lack of capital .
hopefully , the government investment in the track , and tolls investment in rolling stock should help to fix the degradation since privatization

  by David Benton
Well , it looks like Fay ruchwaite and others may get thier comeupperance after all . Not for the original purchase ( that would probably cause imbarrassment for the govt ) , but for insider trading , surrounding thier sale of tranz rial shares

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/storydisplay. ... on=general

  by David Benton
Ritchwaite apparently believes in the company he asset stripped ability to prosper .
It probably would have had he invested in it , rather than stripping it .
With a personal wealth of around $ 600 million , hopefully he will pay , to the benefit of toll rail .the big losers will be small shareholders , who have since sold thier shares . i dont think they recieve any compensation .

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/busi ... ction=rail

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/busi ... ction=rail

  by David Benton
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/index.cfm?c_i ... D=10007926

Well , it looks like Mike bloomfield is not in a copperating mood .
looks like he has some valid points too , though i can t pretend to understand 1/2 the legal jargon .
perhaps the commisiion "hurried" his case , obviouslythey are more interested in the bigger fish , and probably wanted to have him "cooperating " .
  by David Benton
this is no surpise to anyone . just politicking before the election . the government said when it first borught the track back , that it would probably haver to spend more than $ 200 millon on the track .

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/index.cfm?c_i ... D=10330955
  by David Benton
some good info on the difference between road and rail in this article .
The government wont want to be seen to be giving Australian owned Toll too much before the general election . so this issue will probably go on the back burner till after then . The minister says as much in his case by case comment , i.e lets slow this down .

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/index.cfm?c_i ... D=10332405
  by David Benton
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/index.cfm?c_i ... D=10332521 .

The govermnet has $ 500 million more than budgeted from company tax revenue . It has proposed spending it on road transport .
the greens co leader , Jeanette Fitzsimons , proposes spending it on rail and public transport instead , more effective in the face of rising Oil prices .
Ms Fitzsimons has long been a supporter of railways and public transport .
She used to take her bike on the Auckland commuter trains to get to university , at a time when the Auckland subbies were less than user friendly .