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The kangaroo can fly, but the elephant is grounded



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JOHN MOORE ΜΡ SHADOW MINISTER FOR

COMMONWEALTH j

PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARY MICAH I

BUSINESS and CONSUMER AFFAIRS

THE KANGAROO CAN FLY, BUT THE ELEPHANT IS GROUNDED

While Qantas is free from Ministerial interference, the Commonwealth Bank is subjected to the intervention of the Treasurer", according to John Moore.

Mr. Moore the Opposition privatisation spokesman, said today the Government was manipulating our Government enterprises - demonstrating blatant inconsistency in Government policy - and creating harmful uncertainty.

"Speaking on this morning's AM program Mr. Willis said that Qantas1 bid for a stake in Air New Zealand was none of the Government's business. He said: -"...it was not really a matter for the Government to

encourage or discourage Qantas.

Basically it's a commercial decision Qantas will have to take and it is not a Government decision as such."

"Contrast this position with that of the Treasurer - where earlier this week he intervened against management wishes by stepping in and blocking the Commonwealth's bid for the Bank of New Zealand.

"In the aftermath of the Treasurer's world roadshow and his rhetoric about his commitment to the processes of financial markets, he has intervened in preventing the Commonwealth Bank from acquiring a share of the Bank of New Zealand.

"To make matters worse, the Treasurer's decision was in conflict with both the desires of the union involved and the commercial judgement of the Bank's senior management.

"In order to survive in the tough international mar4ee.tplace, both the Commonwealth Bank and Qantas will need an autonomous management able to implement its plans and embark on acquisitions free from political

interference.

"The difficulty the Government has in developing a coherent approach to its public enterprises will no doubt hasten the resolve of the affected managements to go down the privatisation path.

Canberra 19 October, 1988 Contact 77 4133.