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Public Trust ownership heads for court

The Government is to ask the High Court who owns the Public Trust Office.

Tuesday, December 23rd 1997, 12:00AM

by Philip Macalister

A move by the Government to determine who actually owns the Public Trust Office is an early step in preparing the office for corporatisation and eventual sale.
Tuariki John Delamere, the minister in charge of the office, says, "the Government is going to court to establish whether past or present customers may have a claim against the assets of the Public Trust Office."
He says differing legal opinions have been expressed on the matter, so the High Court will be asked to make a determination.

The court will be asked to appoint, for the hearing, senior counsel to represent the PTO's large number of customers.
Delamere says the move is part of a restructuring of the office, which is necessary to enable it to operate in a "more commercial and competitively neutral fashion".
The office is currently moving from its roots as a trustee company to a financial services company. It will shortly introduce mortgages, mortgage protection insurance, and fire and general insurance products.
The office employs 458 people and has annual revenue of $98 million.
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AIA - Back My Build 6.19 - - -
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ANZ 8.64 7.99 7.49 7.35
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China Construction Bank Special - - - -
Co-operative Bank - First Home Special - ▼7.09 - -
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Co-operative Bank - Standard 8.40 ▼7.79 7.39 7.25
Credit Union Auckland 7.70 - - -
First Credit Union Special - 7.45 7.35 -
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Heartland Bank - Reverse Mortgage - - - -
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ICBC 7.85 7.05 6.85 6.59
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Kainga Ora - First Home Buyer Special - - - -
Kiwibank 8.50 8.35 7.89 7.65
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