Kiwifruit whitewash worries, the housing squeeze, Meridian’s risks and Fulton Hogan’s rights issue

Heightened fears an inquiry into Zespri's Chinese smuggling offences will be a whitewash.

The kiwifruit group investigating Zespri’s Chinese smuggling offences have yet to contact the Chinese families of those jailed, heightening fears of a whitewash.

In today’s National Business Review print edition, business reporter Jamie Ball reports NZ Kiwifruit Growers – which has two full-time employees and shares premises with Zespri – has been running its inquiry for six months but the group only visited China for the first time last month.

In NBR In Depth, New Zealand Institute executive director Oliver Hartwich writes “you ain’t seen nothing yet” on the country’s housing shortage, which he predicts will get worse without a massive building programme.

Shoeshine studies the independent research on Meridian Energy’s IPO. How common are the assumptions and how much is discounted for the Greens/Labour power plan and a possible Tiwai aluminium smelter shutdown? And are they a little too positive?

Meanwhile, business editor Duncan Bridgeman outlines unlisted infrastructure giant Fulton Hogan’s plans for a rights issue.

In NBR Property, property editor Chris Hutching reveals the mortgagee sale of a Gulf Harbour property is being finalised.

In other news, commercial insurance giant FM Global, which already covers $US30 billion of New Zealand assets, wants to expand its Asia-Pacific business, despite suffering losses in the hundreds of millions of dollars in the Christchurch earthquakes.

Accident Compensation Corporation Minister Judith Collins tells political editor Rob Hosking who she thinks should set levies, and where she thinks ACC’s money is best spent.

In Margin Call, editor-in-chief Nevil Gibson explores the political risks for stocks following the Australian and German elections. What do they mean for investors – and even for New Zealand’s general election next year?

As part of our Lunch In The Boardroom series, Genesis Energy director Joanna Perry gives her take on governance and board composition, as well as the former Olympic rower’s lessons from her sporting endeavours.

All this and more in today’s National Business Review print edition. Out now.

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