Catholic Church in $1bn Plot to Sell off Sydney’s Cemeteries
By Brad Norington
November 15, 2017
All cemeteries across metropolitan Sydney could be up for sale, with a $1 billion privatisation proposal being considered by the NSW government that involves handing control to the Catholic Church.
Catholic Archbishop of Sydney Anthony Fisher has been an active supporter of the proposal advocated by an investment advisory firm, Fabrico, which claims “a commercial way of thinking” is needed to tackle a burial-space shortage on crown land in greater Sydney.
Under the sell-off plan, Sydney’s four cemetery trusts currently owned by the NSW government and operating on crown land would be consolidated into a new company and leased for 99 years to Fabrico.
Fabrico would then seek to sublease management of the combined cemeteries covering all religious faiths to the Catholic Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust, which currently manages Australia’s largest cemetery at Rookwood in Sydney’s west, and is controlled by Sydney’s Catholic Archdiocese.