COFCO, controlled by the Chinese guvmint, appears to have control of Tully Sugar after announcing today that they had reached 61.25%. The offer has been extended by two weeks and COFCO has expressed an interest in acquiring the 30% holding of Mackay Sugar. A shareholding of 90% enables compulsory acquisition of the remainder.
The biggest loser may be Queensland Sugar (QSL) as its marketing supply come under further threat. QSL had problems last season when a poor harvest brought its hedging strategy unstuck with returns to growers subsequently impaired.
Foreign ownership of Australian agricultural assets has become a big political issue in recent times. Terry McCrann is more concerned by the prospect of Chinese ownership of Grange Hermitage, which he regards as Australia's greatest global brand. This could also give a new double meaning to 'reds in the cellar'. No! Hang onto the Grange!