Christchurch asset sale protest planned

  • 13/01/2016
Christchurch asset sale protest planned

Keep Our Assets Canterbury is planning another protest against possible asset sales by Christchurch City Council.

About 10 people turned out to a protest organised by the group outside council offices last week, but another one is planned at a council depot in Sydenham this afternoon.

The group says the council doesn't need to sell assets after it announced a $635 million settlement with earthquake insurers late last year.

"It is madness for a city undergoing the biggest rebuild in New Zealand's history to sell its own infrastructure company," the group said.

Last year the council passed a long-term plan with rates rises and a phased asset-sale programme to raise money to continue rebuilding the earthquake-damaged city.

The council has talked about selling minority stakes in council-controlled businesses and has said there'll be consultation but business wants more widespread asset sales.

The Canterbury Employers' Chamber of Commerce, in a submission to the council's long term plan, said the council did not need to own libraries.

The business lobby group said the rebuild was an opportunity to create new "commercial delivery vehicles" to work in partnership with the private sector, including for the city's port.