16 Dec 2008

World sharemarket turmoil hits community trust

7:47 pm on 16 December 2008

A Northland Regional Council community trust has shrunk by nearly $2 million in the past year, which Enterprise Northland says is due to the dramatic drop in world equity markets.

The trust was set up in 1996 with capital of about $12 million from the sell-down of shares in Port Whangarei.

Interest from the capital has been used over the past twelve years to help fund the region's economic development agencies - Enterprise Northland and Destination Northland.

The regional nest-egg dropped from $12.3 million at the end of the first quarter, to $10.8 million by the end of June.

Enterprise Northland said the fund was performing well until the dramatic drop in world equity markets late last year.

Regional council chairman Mark Farnsworth said in future the community trust will operate under contract to the council.