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Submission to Minister on the Crown Minerals Amendment Bill

By Institute of Directors
11 Nov 2021
read time
3 min to read
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The Crown Minerals Amendment Bill amends the Crown minerals regime to codify the obligation to decommission oil and gas assets and ensure the cost of decommissioning is met by the permit or licence holders.

The IoD’s letter to the Minister comments on the proposed director liability regime that will hold previous directors who have transferred the entity’s gas or oil permit or license interests to a new entity. Previous directors will retain ‘trailing’ or ‘perpetual liability’ where the current or immediate former title holder is unable to undertake decommissioning.

The IoD has raised its concerns that the proposed director liability regime is overly onerous and disproportionate to the issues the regime is designed to address. It believes there other means available within the proposed Bill to ensure title holders fulfil their decommissioning obligations.

It has emphasised the importance of getting the governance settings right to attract skilled, experienced and responsible directors to govern the process of decommissioning and lead on sustainable ways forward. The settings need to take into account the New Zealand context of a small talent pool and the challenging D&O Insurance environment.

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