Corruption serious threat to New Zealand #CAANZ

Anyone home at Dunedin City Council ?
[indicators only serve to show New Zealand hasn’t been properly measured and reported for corrupt practice in this and previous decades, dodgy as]

### Last updated 14:30, September 17 2015
CAANZ: Rising corruption a serious threat to New Zealand
By Ellen Read
Rewarding whistle-blowers and ensuring companies have anti-corruption policies are just two things needed to help fight financial corruption and protect New Zealand’s reputation.

That is according to Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand (CAANZ), which released a trans-Tasman report Are Australia and New Zealand corrupt? in Sydney on Thursday along with a strong message that complacency is not an option.

A high level roundtable is planned to follow the launch with New Zealand represented by Serious Fraud Office director Julie Read, Financial Market Authority head of enforcement Belinda Moffat and Suzanne Snively, head of Transparency International NZ.
While New Zealand ranked a healthy second in the 2014 Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index, it was a slip from the top place it had held for many years. Denmark now holds the top spot. Australia is ranked 11th, the second consecutive drop.

“Not only do reports indicate that rates of corruption in [Australia and New Zealand] may be rising, we are also doing more business with countries that have different ethical frameworks from our own,” CAANZ president Fred Hutchings says in the report.

Of New Zealand’s top 10 trading partners two rank poorly in the Transparency International Index – China sits in 100th place (out of 176 countries surveyed) and Thailand at number 85.
There is no measure or estimate of how much corruption costs New Zealand each year but the CAANZ report singled out recent finance company collapses and director prosecutions as costly examples.
Read more

Stuff: Bribery and corruption report should be ‘a wake-up call’


### 17 September 2015
Calls for action in fight against corruption
Australia and New Zealand risk losing their global standing in anti-corruption efforts, prompting our calls for a holistic and sustainable approach to addressing bribery and corruption in the region. Corruption is on the rise according to our latest future[inc] publication, Are Australia and New Zealand Corrupt?, with both countries increasingly trading with countries considered to be corrupt.

Research suggests bribery and corruption has increased by upwards of 80% and both Australia and New Zealand have fallen in global rankings for transparency and corruption.

Chartered Accountants ANZ CEO Lee White said that while both Australia and New Zealand have traditionally traded on reputations of honesty and integrity, this reputation is at risk if the issue isn’t addressed, and steps put in place to mitigate the threat. […] The report suggests legislation alone will not stamp out corruption, but does outline a series of recommendations which could be adopted across Australia and New Zealand. Recommendations include compulsory anti-bribery and corruption policies in NZX and ASX listing rulings, regulation to prohibit the awarding of public sector contracts for those with past convictions, and a prohibition on rewarding public sector contracts to companies without corruption policies.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, DCC, Economics, Geography, Media, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Politics

17 responses to “Corruption serious threat to New Zealand #CAANZ

  1. Elizabeth


    See comment by russandbev in reaction to news that the family of Arthur Allan Thomas is considering bringing a defamation suit against NZ Police.

  2. Gurglars

    The new slogan for Dunedin.

    Corruption stops here.

  3. Elizabeth

    ### NZ Herald 11:35 AM Tuesday Apr 5, 2016
    Panama Papers: IRD probes NZ clients of Mossack Fonseca
    By Hamish Fletcher
    Inland Revenue is trying to get information on New Zealanders who have dealt with Mossack Fonseca – the Panamanian law firm at the centre of a global scandal over how the wealthy hide their assets. According to The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, an 11.5 million document leak from the law firm shows its services appear to have been used to “facilitate massive money laundering, tax avoidance and criminal activity, including drugs and arms dealing”. New Zealand has been named by the ICIJ as a “tax haven” used by Mossack Fonseca and details have emerged of local trusts with links to the Panamanian firm.
    Read more + Video


    Tue, 5 Apr 2016
    ODT: Investigations into ‘Panama Papers’
    Governments across the world began investigating possible financial wrongdoing by the rich and powerful after a leak of four decades of documents from a Panamanian law firm that specialised in setting up offshore companies. The ‘Panama Papers’ revealed financial arrangements of global politicians and public figures including friends of Russian President Vladimir Putin, relatives of the prime ministers of Britain, Iceland and Pakistan, and the president of Ukraine. While holding money in offshore companies is not illegal, journalists who received the leaked documents said they could provide evidence of wealth hidden for tax evasion, money laundering, sanctions busting, drug deals or other crimes.

  4. Elizabeth


    [The team at German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung] shared its findings with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) who created a database to enable reporters to search the sea of information.

    ### NZ Herald 10:56 AM Wednesday Apr 6, 2016
    ‘Interested in data?’ How the Panama Papers were leaked
    By Victoria Craw
    “Hello. This is John Doe. Interested in data? I’m happy to share.”
    Those are the four sentences that led to the biggest data leak in history that has implicated 12 leaders and led to mass protests and investigations from Iceland to the UK and New Zealand.
    On Monday, the world was rocked by revelations from more than 11 million files leaked from law firm Mossack Fonesca proving the financial dealings of everyone from drug lords to paedophiles, world leaders, athletes and FIFA officials.
    The Panamanian law firm has offices worldwide, reportedly with 600 employees in 42 countries, and specialises in offshore financial services, such as setting up shell companies.
    Now the team behind the 2.6 terabytes of data described as “more than anything you have ever seen” have revealed how it all came about through an encrypted message from a confidential source that has never been seen in the flesh.
    Read more + Video


    3 Apr 2016
    ICIJ · The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists
    Giant Leak of Offshore Financial Records Exposes Global Array of Crime and Corruption
    Millions of documents show heads of state, criminals and celebrities using secret hideaways in tax havens
    How a global industry of law firms and big banks sells financial secrecy

  5. Hype O'Thermia

    In the digital age there are so many ways of operating. Bad – tax evasion by the 1% the greedy slimeballs. Good – file sharing and all those journalists all over the globe who cooperated to bring this story to light. Good – Assange’s work in providing a place for sunshine’s healthy rays to shine on grimy stuff pulled out from under the axminster by people who believe in that mantra burbled by politicians (pre gaining power, quick evaporation afterwards) : “Transparency”.

    {Moderated. -Eds}

  6. Calvin Oaten

    What the world needs now is more diversions to minimise the likes of the latest corruption exposés. The flag referendum didn’t do it, Helen Clark’s tilt at the top UN job won’t either. Hey! how about the Antarctic ice all melting? Sea rising a few metres might be the answer. It will certainly work for our lot here. Not so sure about the world at large. I guess the standard fallback of wars for whatever pretext will have to do. The “world’s leaders” can strut their stuff on wars better than anything. Meantime they will keep getting richer and richer.

  7. Calvin Oaten

    The ‘International Consortium of Journalists’ ? I wonder if ‘Big Julie’ knows of its existence. He could take out a membership and get his band of merry ‘doodlers’ into it. Could then see some interesting news. Might even find some corruption in Dunedin. Assuming there is any of course.

    • Hype O'Thermia

      There is definitely no corruption in Dunedin.
      Our politicians are wise beyond their years. They cannot abide waste, and are conscientious stewards of our resources.
      All council employees are exceptionally able.
      Fortunate indeed are we to live in this paradise on earth, where the sun shines upon rich and poor alike and freedom of speech is never curtailed.

  8. Elizabeth

    Or bottled water Calvin. People we know thrashing local resources at Canterbury for a quick buck, with a little China thrown in.

    ### 07:35, April 6 2016
    Second Canterbury property with water extraction rights up for sale
    By Charlie Mitchell – The Press
    The extent of New Zealand’s offshore water bottling deals is under scrutiny as it emerges a second consent in drought-prone Canterbury is being advertised to companies.
    Several prominent businessmen are linked to the sale of a valuable water consent in Pendarves, near Ashburton. The online listing boasts “water, water everywhere and lots of it to drink”.

    High-profile businessmen linked to the sale include Stuart McLauchlan, who is chairman of government agency Pharmac and the University of Otago pro-chancellor. When asked for comment, McLauchlan referred questions to Mike Coburn, chairman of global water-bottling company Naturally Pure. Coburn could not be reached for comment.

    It comes amid controversy over the Ashburton District Council’s decision to sell a property with rights to extract 40 billion litres of water over 30 years to an overseas company.
    […] The advertisement describes an “outstanding opportunity for any major water/soft drink supplier or investors/developers to take advantage of the ever increasing demand for bottled water, both nationally and internationally.” It notes the water was “confirmed to be some of the purest water on the planet”.
    The property, first listed in October last year, is in the over-allocated Chertsey groundwater zone, meaning new resource consents to extract water are difficult to obtain.
    Read more

    Trade Me Property ID#: EMV741
    Pendarves, Chertsey Kyle Road, Ashburton
    Development site 10,700m2
    Price by negotiatio­n
    Contact Simon Rowland-Jones
    Agency reference #: CIC43323

    Note, location photo and other details now removed from the Listing at Trade Me – refer to Stuff article for full listing pictured by screenshot.

    This image has been photoshopped from the Stuff image, by whatifdunedin:

    Trade Me property ad - Ashburton [via 6.4.16] 1

    • Elizabeth

      ### Sun, 21 Aug 2016 at 6:17 p.m.
      Emails put Ashburton mayor Angus McKay under fire
      By Thomas Mead
      Ashburton mayor Angus McKay is under fire over his handling of failed attempt to set up a water bottling plant in the region. An email obtained by Newshub suggests he knew Chinese investors were involved in the deal, despite saying he had “no knowledge” of who was backing the purchase of a block of council land, which carries consent to draw 40 billion litres of water over 30 years. The prospective buyer was named as local company NZ Pure Blue, which intended to set up a water bottling plant. The deal sparked a public outcry, and on June 30 Mr McKay told reporters the sale was to a New Zealand company, saying, “If there is anyone behind it, I have no knowledge of it, and neither do my councillors.” Newshub has obtained an email through the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act (LGOIMA), which suggests Mr McKay met a Chinese businessman four months prior.
      Read more + Video

      • Hype O'Thermia

        Ooh-aah & arrr, That whole water-selling thing sounded either dodge-as or loony from the get-go.
        So he’s not a naive hick loony, right?

        • Elizabeth

          In the same way Dunedin’s McLauchlan and Coburn are profiteers…. or tried to be at Ashburton.

  9. Elizabeth


    ### 6:51 pm today
    RNZ Checkpoint | RNZ News
    PM has deposit in foreign trusts firm
    By Jane Patterson – Political Editor
    Prime Minister John Key has a short-term deposit with a firm specialising in foreign trusts, according to a new register on MP’s finances. This revelation comes as the government responds to criticisms New Zealand is being used by wealthy people around the world as a tax haven, through the use of foreign trusts. The register containing details of MPs’ finances, the Register of Pecuniary Interests, states the prime minister has a short-term deposit with Antipodes Trust Group. On its website, Antipodes Trust Group touts the use of New Zealand-based foreign trusts to “carefully manage the inter-generational transfer of wealth”. It also lists the benefits of New Zealand’s legal structure. “New Zealand offers a legislated tax-neutral environment for New Zealand based foreign trusts. The tax treatment of such trusts is based on the residence of the settlor rather than the trustee so that, provided the settlor and the beneficiaries are resident outside New Zealand and there is no New Zealand sourced income, the trust will not be subject to New Zealand taxation of any kind.”
    Read more + Checkpoint Video


    Adjunct Professor at Victoria University, John Shewan, believes tax challenges posed by the digital economy can’t be played down.

    ### 1:13 pm today
    RNZ News
    Review could change NZ trust laws
    The scope of New Zealand’s foreign trust review is wide enough to ensure there can be changes if problems are found, says John Shewan, the tax specialist appointed to conduct it. Global attention is focused on foreign trusts after a leak from a Panamanian law firm last week showed how the world’s elite set up tax shelters to hide their wealth, including in New Zealand. The government has ordered the review on disclosure rules covering foreign trusts amid claims that New Zealand is a tax haven. Labour Party leader Andrew Little said the terms of the review were too narrow and there was no point holding the review behind closed doors.
    Read more

    7:22 am today RNZ News
    Tax expert John Shewan to review foreign trust disclosure rules
    The tax expert John Shewan who’s been appointed to investigate the foreign trust laws says the protection of the country’s reputation is paramount.
    Audio | Download: Ogg   MP3 (5′ 37″)

    11:48 am today RNZ News
    Who is John Shewan?
    By Gyles Beckford – Business Editor
    The government has appointed a veteran of the accounting and audit sector, John Shewan, to conduct an independent inquiry to check whether the rules covering New Zealand-based overseas trusts are fit for purpose or need improving. The terms of reference include reviewing foreign trusts’ disclosure rules on record-keeping, enforcement and the exchange of information with other tax jurisdictions, and Mr Shewan is to report back by June 30.
    Read more

  10. Elizabeth

    An internal review is not a commission of inquiry.

  11. Elizabeth

    ClarkeAndDawe Published on Apr 13, 2016
    Clarke and Dawe – Australians who require Panamanian legal advice.
    “Mr Lewis Poles, Tax Advisor” Originally aired on ABC TV: 13/04/2016

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