New Zealand Law Society - OIO good character systems OK

OIO good character systems OK

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Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) has released a report by Peter McKenzie QC who reviewed the Overseas Investment Office's process for assessing good character under the Overseas Investment Act 2005.

The 14-page report says that Mr McKenzie considers that files provided to him by the OIO have been dealt with in an appropriate manner in relation to the "good character" criterion.

He says appropriate disclosures were made to the relevant Ministers, or other relevant decision maker, where the OIO had reached the stage of providing its recommendations. The test applied in determining good character was consistent with that which he had determined to be required.

Mr McKenzie has made recommendations, and LINZ CEO Peter Mersi says these are being implemented immediately.

The recommendations are to:

  • ensure relevant factors found during internet searches on good character are advised to Ministers;
  • ensure that a fuller record is kept of internet searches so that the information is available later if required; and
  • require that where bearer shares are being used, these be converted into registered shares or held by a reputable bank, prior to any consent being granted.