12 May 2015

National MP property debate shut down

9:08 am on 12 May 2015

The National Party has shut down debate over its MPs investments in the Auckland housing market.

The view from Devonport towards Auckland city.

Photo: 123RF

The latest register of pecuniary interests reveals 18 National MPs have investment properties in Auckland, with some owning several, and 22 own investment properties elsewhere in the country.

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters said that was bound to influence their views about the housing crisis in Auckland.

100914. Photo Diego Opatowski / RNZ. Winston Peters talking about police numbers at Hutt Gables Retirement Village.

NZ First Leader Winston Peters. Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

"This is not to criticise any of the investments that MPs might have taken but it sure explains their prejudice against taking the right steps to flatten out the Auckland housing market which is rising at such a level that no one can save that much."

Green Party co-leader Russel Norman said some MPs would be making hundreds of thousands of dollars in tax-free income because New Zealand did not have a capital gains tax on investment properties.

Radio New Zealand asked National MPs who owned investment property in Auckland for their responses.

Instead, the party's Senior Government Whip Tim Macindoe supplied a short written statement on behalf of the caucus:

"As the register of pecuniary interests shows, MPs from all political parties have a wide range of investments, including property.

"The purpose of the register is to make that information publicly available."

The Labour Party also had a similar clampdown on its MPs talking about the register of pecuniary interests.

The latest register of financial interests showed 15 Labour MPs and five Green MPs owned second properties. Seven New Zealand First MPs own a second property, including Mr Peters, although most of those are holiday homes.

The full document is available here.