25 Dec 2015

Forest sale only has short term gains - Peters

8:56 pm on 25 December 2015

The sale of 30,000 hectares of Nelson forest to an overseas company only has short term benefits, says NZ First Leader Winston Peters.

Winston Peters.

Winston Peters. Photo: RNZ / Demelza Leslie

Japanese company Sumitomo Forestry is paying $370 million for the radiata pine forest near Nelson, to add to the 5000 that it already owns in the area.

A Japanese multinational, Sumitomo Forestry, says it is paying 370 million dollars to buy 30-thousand hectares of radiata pine forest near Nelson.

The company said the deal to acquire the land - currently owned by Tasman Bay Forests - was due to be completed by June.

Mr Peters said the Government thought it was a good idea, but the value from the product would all go offshore.

He said the benefits were only temporary and the sale was not in New Zealand's best interests.

Sumitomo has been manufacturing medium-density fibreboard at its Nelson Pine Industries plant in Richmond for nearly 30 years.

It has not said whether timber from its latest purchase will be processed here or offshore.