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Telecoms Kiwi Share & Risk and the NZDB

Greetings Readers

Compiling material and comment at the end of tenuous phone connection to a hotel in Warsaw, Poland brings home the need for a sensible outcome from the telecommunications debate that is being joined over the Kiwi share limitations.

That the Internet has an important role for most farmers is clear. That most farmers find the Internet bothersome to use is also clear. Not because of the Internet itself but because of the problems with connection and speed of access.

A way out of the Kiwi share dilemma, which achieves the best connection outcome for rural communities are urgently needed. For the debate to drift into an argument on cross subsidisation between urban and rural users would be a disaster. The Kiwi share delivered rights to every household – rurals included - these should be retained.

However reality must prevail when new technology is urgently required to improve the operation of farm businesses.The cost of delay may far exceed the benefits to be gained.

Business use of the Internet is a two way street for farmers. Bankers, local government, merchandisers and retailers to name a few are pressing for improved urban-rural contact on internet based systems because it’s cheaper than the current means of contact. They also have a responsibility to contribute.

Bonlac - NZDB

The potential for the NZ Dairy Board – Bonlac deal turning sour is increasing daily. The excitement generated by these capital demanding joint ventures is now wearing off as the reality of business risk bites at the glowing potentials described at the initial signing.

Is the New Zealand Dairy industry being led down an investment path where the risk, is not/cannot be defined but you the producer shareholders will carry the can for over enthusiastic empire building such as happened to MD Foods, the Danish dairy Coop or Sodima the French dairy Coop?

Risk is part of being a farmer but what stop loss mechanisms are in place to protect the interests of the shareholding farmer in these large business joint venture investments where the NZDB cannot exert total control?

Flood and rain and cold seems to be pressing down the earlier optimism we all had for this season being one of the best.

Good farming

The Editor


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