2 Nov 2014

State housing plan 'not an asset sale'

10:50 am on 2 November 2014

The Prime Minister says the Government's plan to sell up to 20,000 state houses does not amount to asset sales.

Surburban New Zealand state houses in Hornby, Christchurch.

Prime Minister John Key said no decision had been made on how many state houses could be sold. Photo: PHOTO NZ

The Government has indicated it will be selling part of its $17 billion portfolio, and Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett yesterday acknowledged thousands of homes could be sold.

But John Key said no decision has been made on how many houses will go.

John Key.

John Key Photo: RNZ / Demelza Leslie

He said the sale would not amount to asset sales.

"If at the end of the day, Housing NZ sells a few state houses, well, actually, that's happened for a long period of time. We often trade our stock.

"So if we sell some individual state houses, it's not an asset sale. If we sold Housing New Zealand or part of it, it would be, and we have absolutely no plans to sell."

Mr Key said the Government was undertaking a massive redevelopment of state housing stock because many houses were in the wrong place or unsuitable for housing needs.