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State-Owned Enterprises of New Zealand

State-Owned Enterprises in New Zealand (known in media as SOEs) are registered companies listed under Schedules 1 and 2 of the State-Owned Enterprises Act 1986. Most SOEs are former government departments or agencies that were corporatised.

Table of contents
1 Function
2 Well known SOEs
3 Former SOEs
4 'Shell' SOEs
5 Non-SOE crown-owned companies
6 External links and sources


Their function is to operate successfully as a business, as profitable as those not owned by the Crown. The section of the Act defining this is usually interpreted as meaning that SOEs are expected to ready themselves for privatisation, though this is not always the case.

Two Ministers of the Crown act as the shareholding ministers in the company. In the case of SOEs these are usually the Minister of State-Owned Enterprises and the Minister responsible for the particular company.

Crown Company Monitoring Advisory Unit

The Crown is assisted in the running of SOEs and other Crown-owned companies by the Crown Company Monitoring Advisory Unit (CCMAU) in The Treasury.

Well known SOEs

Well-known SOEs include New Zealand Post Limited, Meteorological Service of New Zealand Limited (MetService), Transpower New Zealand Limited, Mighty River Power Limited, Meridian Energy Limited and Genesis Power Limited.

Former SOEs

Former SOEs come in three forms -- [1] those removed from the Schedules of the Act and made Crown entities, [2] those removed and not privatised, and [3] those removed and privatised. Well known former SOEs that have become crown entities include broadcasting companies Television New Zealand Limited (TVNZ) and Radio New Zealand Limited (RNZ).

Privatised SOEs

Privatised SOEs include Telecom Corporation of New Zealand Limited. Companies that are still SOEs but are now shell companies, having had most of their assets privatised, include the Electricity Corporation of New Zealand Limited (ECNZ).

'Shell' SOEs

Some SOEs, such as the
New Zealand Railways Corporation (NZR) and the Electricity Corporation of New Zealand Limited (ECNZ) are effectively small SOEs or shell companies. For example, NZR is a company that holds the Crown's land that is leased at a peppercorn rental to a former SOE, Tranz Rail Holdings Limited, and ECNZ, formerly New Zealand's monopoly electricity generator, is now a shell company following its split into three further SOEs.

Update: in October 2003, the Crown announced its intention to use New Zealand Railways Corporation as a holding company for buying back some Tranz Rail assets while a new crown entity, tentatively called TrackCo, is formed.

Non-SOE crown-owned companies

Some Crown-owned or majority-owned companies that are not SOEs include Air New Zealand Limited.

Crown entities

Some of these companies are not SOEs but instead crown entities. These include Crown Research Institutes (CRIs) as well as other well known New Zealand companies such as school textbook publisher Learning Media Limited, the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra Limited (NZSO) and broadcasting companies Television New Zealand Limited (TVNZ) and Radio New Zealand Limited (RNZ).

External links and sources