DecisionExemption declined
Section 61C of the Overseas Investment Act 2005 and Schedule 4 of the Overseas Investment Regulations 2005
Decision MakerAssociate Minister of Finance (Hon. Dr David Clark)
Decision Date22 August 2019
ExemptionAn application to be added to Schedule 4 of the Overseas Investment Regulations 2005 as a “New Zealand controlled person”.
ApplicantMercury NZ Limited
New Zealand Government (51.15%)
New Zealand Public (28.82%)
United States Public (5.1%)
United Kingdom Public (7.49%)
Australian Public (3.53%)
Various overseas persons (3.91%)
Background

The Applicant is a mixed-ownership model company listed in Schedule 5 of the Public Finance Act 1981. It applied to be added to Schedule 4 of the Overseas Investment Regulations 2005 (Schedule 4). An entity listed on Schedule 4 is exempt from the requirement for consent to acquire sensitive assets.

The Overseas Investment Amendment Act 2018 amended the power to grant exemptions. The Minister may now only recommend regulations to provide for an exemption if the proposed exemption meets the criteria for exemption set out in section 61E of the Overseas Investment Act 2005 (Act). 

The exemption must be consistent with one or more of the purposes for exemption set out in section 61B of the Act. Addition of an entity to Schedule 4 is not consistent with any of the purposes for exemption set out in section 61B(a) to (c) of the Act, and accordingly it is no longer possible for a new entity to be added to Schedule 4. This means that if the Applicant becomes an overseas person (25% or more overseas owned), it will be required to apply for consent to acquire sensitive assets under the Act.

More informationTim Tubman
Chapman Tripp 
PO Box 2206
AUCKLAND 1140