2 Apr 2015

English wants Solid Energy to continue

8:51 am on 2 April 2015

Finance Minister Bill English says he wants Solid Energy to continue to operate, despite the chair quitting over concerns about its viability.

Finance Minister Bill English talks about rising house prices in Auckland.

Finance Minister Bill English talks about rising house prices in Auckland. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

In an email, the state owned company's former chair Pip Dunphy told Solid Energy directors she quit over a difference of opinion with the Government, saying she did not think anything more could be done for the company.

Mr English acknowledged there were questions about whether the company, which owed hundreds of millions of dollars to banks, could survive.

But he said the Government wanted to assure the 700 people who work there it would do everything it could to help ensure the company continues - to a point.

"We are constructive participants in the discussion but we're not putting more money in, the other parties need to come to the party."

He said every effort was being taken to secure the viability of Solid Energy and the Government has had a great deal of input from Ms Dunphy, who he said did a very good job as chair.

Solid Energy's headquarters.

Photo: RNZ / Conan Young

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