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Thursday, August 02, 2012

Pipe dream

The Pacific Fibre internet cable project failed because no-one of any size in this country could be arsed making a long-term investment and because the Americans don't trust the Chinese. Multiple dimensions of pathetic.

In August 2011, the NZ Herald reported Groser had introduced Pacific Fibre to a large Chinese investor, "talking serious money." Pacific Fibre CEO Mark Rushworth said at the time that discussions with Chinese equity investors had been "very successful."

However, following those talks, as Pacific Fibre kept US authorities informed about the potential stake holders, it was made clear "we couldn’t have had significant Chinese funding on the project,” Drury said.

Pacific Fibre always knew there would be issues if it secured a Chinese company to build the cable, hence it was happy to have secured TE Subcom, which had offered it the best deal, Drury said.

“That had been our first big thing. It had been made very clear from those who look at national infrastructure that there would be potential issues if it was a Chinese vendor connecting to the US," he said.

But as it became clear local investors would not back the project, and as sticking points rose with Australian super funds and other sovereign wealth funds, it became clear China was where the money was.

"And they love investing in infrastructure, especially strategic infrastructure like this," Drury said.
“Then as we just tested that with some of the US connections, it was made clear that that may be a problem," he said.

The sticking point with US authorities was that having Chinese investors in the project meant they would likely require the use of Chinese equipment for use in the cable: “Potentially that was the next issue," Drury said.

 The NZ Super Fund has bought into forestry and petrol stations domestically and must have been approached about this project. What a pity they couldn't pony up for it.

The NZ government haven't really helped things when they have many tools - like the mega millions in UFB roll-out subsidies they are chucking at the wider Telecom empire - that could be used to support the venture. When the government sits on its hands in this matter it is acting to maintain the Telecom monopoly and thus maintain the premium of price consumers are forced to pay and the overall disservice of Telecom.

Considering the inordinate haste at which they are willing to sell off the first of the power companies (giving the Waitangi Tribunal only three weeks to report in full so a sale can be done this calendar year) this government are conducting themselves like crack-fuelled gangsters on a rampage - regulating their chums' looting under the guise of "investment". The sum total of these Tory policies will be a large (and fiscally unjustified considering the low interest rates payable on NZ sovereign debt in this period) transfer of both wealth and power to an established elite within the country and foreign interests which will be difficult to unwind by future governments. And please note at this point that any notion that efficiencies, improved services or price reductions will result from these radical changes is not even raised anymore - they have conceded those reasons were marginal to bogus from the start of their programme.


At 2/8/12 9:12 pm, Blogger Paul said...

This gubbamint actually likes large corporate monopoly (or at least duopoly).
What if (then), them there "chinks" offered to build an alternate route?
"Worse" still .... what IF there were people prepared to go into partnership with them?
..... or would an Indian consortium be more acceptable you think? Could be arranged I spose.

When will someone ask in the MSM what shares Stevie-boy Joyce has? Chorus/Telecom perhaps? It all reminds me of Moreece Williamson a couple of decades ago. This gubbamint REALLY does act on ideology. It hasn't got a fresh idea to rub together with a slightly stale one!

At 3/8/12 12:09 pm, Blogger countryboy said...

I have an idea ! How about we just say ' Fuck the Internet ! ' How about that for a radical thingy bob ? And while we're at it . Fuck cell phones too . And fuck digital cameras because they're still inferior to film cameras , especially if they're on those hideous android slabs of touchy feely , stroke and tickle , techno poop machines. How many people think they have art photos of the kids and granny when in reality they have ' noisy ' ( digital term for old school grain ) furry , flat , ugly images that we're told are fabulous . So , who tricked us into thinking less was more anyway ? Ask yourself ? ' Can I grow enough vegetables to sustain myself and my immediate dependents for one calender year ?

No ?

Can I shoot , gut and skin that sheep to feed my pets and for my new winter jacket ?

No ?

Then you have more to worry about than lightening speed Yous tubers and porn or whether you can Twitter your mate who's more than likely sitting beside you anyway . Ok . I could be a Luddite . I am Luddite like and the hypocrisy of writing this on a computer and sending it via the web isn't lost on me . I'm just saying , it wouldn't actually be the end of the world if the Internet just up and fucked off when we have an economic Armageddon heading our way and there are a lot of people out there who can't read a recipe much less grow a spud , ( Yeah , I know , you can Google Spud Growing . ) that's all . The internet is hugely convenient and that's about as much as you can say about it really . It just allows us to live faster thus perceive our lives as being shorter . Great ! That's a plus when I see jonky's dead eyes leering at me from that other great , life changing invention . Television . Who needs books now ? Burn them all !

At 3/8/12 6:26 pm, Blogger Tim said...

TOTALLY agree. I've often thought that IF there were a "cellular outage" one that's kind of like an aluminium one challenging an 'aliminum' one, it would be the best wake-up call fpr a NZ society.

I've also often thought how very very fragile our "Inf..struct-ya" actually is. A mate of mine and I often thought (as 20 year plus IT type-people - actually 30-year plus), that we should do a report.

Then we though Nah! - Why would we when some consultatnt will pop up costing a mint with a cast of thousand hangers-on - all to advise on the bleeding obvious.

I mean .... it's only relatively recently that a firm called Datacom shoved their fibre optic link(s)

in galvanised steel conduit... while 100 meteres down the road .... etc.
Then there's Molesowrth Street.
Then there's Wellington AIrport.
Then there's Kaiwhara....
Then there's Brooklyn ffs where a small roll of numer 8 ..... etc

Good thing I don't have any mal-intent but Christ ALmighty!
But yea.... best lesson could be a cellular outage for a while.
What if there was a 36 hr power cut too.
The simplest thing if some1 had bad intentions and lived in wgtn.

Cudda shudda wudda - I've got better things to do though

At 3/8/12 7:47 pm, Blogger countryboy said...


I rest my cyber case .


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