Katter moves to stop Chinese buying NSW power infrastructure

BOB Katter will introduce legislation in Federal Parliament banning the NSW Government from selling power company Ausgrid to any foreign company.

Speaking outside Queensland Parliament in Brisbane on Wednesday Mr Katter said he did not believe selling Ausgrid to a Chinese company was in Australia's best interest.

Fairfax Media on Wednesday reported Chinese company the State Grid Corporation of China was the frontrunner to buy Ausgrid for more than $10 billion. The only other bidder is another Chinese owned company.

Ausgrid operates the electrical distribution network in the Sydney, Central Coast, Hunter and Newcastle regions.

The expected price is higher than the current Foreign Investment Review Board threshold.

"We will be opposing that sale for any foreign company whatsoever," Mr Katter said.

"I think the NSW government, if they proceed with this, will go down as one of the worst governments ever."

Mr Katter said he believed Federal crossbenchers would support his proposal and expected mining unions to pressure the Labor Party to support it as well.

Mr Katter said he was concerned with the prospect of any foreign-owned company owning a power company.

"It's got nothing to do with China. I'd be taking the exact same position if it was the United States," he said.

Fellow senate crossbencher Nick Xenophon earlier on Wednesday said he would write to Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison to ensure defence and security advice had been sought regarding the potential buyers.

Mr Katter said he had not spoken to Senator Xenophon but did not want to "shilly shally" about the move and believed he and Sen Xenophon would end at the same position. - ARM NEWSDESK


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