Chinese company Shanghai Pengxin has confirmed that it is
aiming to buy a $70 million farm in the central North Island,
which would be second-largest foreign purchase of New Zealand
The company said this afternoon that its subsidiary Pure 100
Farm Limited had signed a sale and purchase agreement for
Lochinver Station, near Taupo.
The sale is now pending approval from the Overseas Investment
The OIO confirmed it had received an application, but would
not comment further.
Pengxin controversially purchased the Crafar Farms in 2012
for $200 million, which was the largest-ever foreign
acquisition of New Zealand land by value.
The Lochinver site is valued at $70 million and covers
13,800ha, compared to the 16 Crafar farms, which covered
Penxgin also owned a 74 per cent stake in 13 farms in the
Its buy-up of land has prompted a strong response from
Opposition MPs, who say New Zealand should not be selling off
its productive land to overseas interests.
Earlier today, Conservative Party leader Colin Craig revealed
the company's plan to buy up more New Zealand land in a
speech in Hastings.
He accused the OIO of keeping the deal secret until the
Speaking to a Grey Power meeting in Hastings this afternoon,
Mr Craig said his party would block all substantial land
sales to foreign buyers - a policy already proposed by New
Zealand First, Labour and Greens.
Mr Craig said: "Although the deal has been agreed between the
parties, and the Overseas Investment Office have received an
application, the deal has not been disclosed to the public,"
Mr Craig said in a statement.
"We believe voters should be aware of what's going on behind
closed doors, this is clearly an election issue."
Lochinver Station is on the Rangitaiki Plains, 32km southeast
of Taupo. The sheep and beef farm was put up for tender early
this year and has a capital valuation of $70.6 million,
making it one of the most highly valued stations in the
The 13,800ha property is being sold by one of New Zealand's
largest privately-owned companies, Stevenson Group, which has
owned it for more than half a century.
Mr Craig said Conservatives would oppose all large,
productive land sales and change the Overseas Investment
Office criteria "so that our country is not sold up".
"The National party waved through the Crafar Farms deal
against our national interests and doubtless will do the same
with Lochinver station.
"We are standing up for Kiwis who want this country to remain
New Zealand owned," he said.
While Opposition parties who want to change foreign
investment rules have not singled out countries, the issue
first gained traction when the Crafar farms were sold to the
As a result, they have been accused by some of racial
- by Isaac Davison of the NZ Herald