New Zealand’s Commerce Minister, Lianne Dalziel, has recently asked the Takeovers Panel to undertake work to look at the issue of schemes of arrangements and amalgamations potentially being used in ways that may not align with the Takeovers Code. The Takeovers Panel has agreed to take on the task.

Ms Dalziel said, ‘I tried to get a partial resolution last year through the Business Law Reform Bill but that required unanimity in Parliament as it was a matter outside the scope of the Bill. Unfortunately, that was not forthcoming. I have reflected on how best to progress this matter, given existing work programme priorities for the Ministry of Economic Development, such as the Reviews of Financial Intermediaries and Products and Providers.’

Since the Takeovers Panel considered this matter last year, the New Zealand Government has adopted a strengthened regulatory impact analysis framework, which took effect on 1 April 2007.

The Minister has referred the matter back to the Takeovers Panel and asked that a Regulatory Impact Statement be included in the report back to her. It is expected that the Takeovers Panel’s consideration of the issue will enable a further period for consultation on the issues. Ms Dalziel is confident that by utilising the new framework, the Takeovers Panel will be able to produce the answer the market is looking for.

Phillips Fox has changed its name to DLA Phillips Fox because the firm entered into an exclusive alliance with DLA Piper, one of the largest legal services organisations in the world. We will retain our offices in every major commercial centre in Australia and New Zealand, with no operational change to your relationship with the firm. DLA Phillips Fox can now take your business one step further − by connecting you to a global network of legal experience, talent and knowledge.

This publication is intended as a first point of reference and should not be relied on as a substitute for professional advice. Specialist legal advice should always be sought in relation to any particular circumstances and no liability will be accepted for any losses incurred by those relying solely on this publication.