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Wednesday, 8 May 1985
Page: 1591

(Question No. 110)

Senator Mason asked the Minister for Resources and Energy, upon notice, on 20 March 1985:

(1) Will construction of the natural gas pipeline from Young to Bathurst, Orange and Lithgow in New South Wales cost approximately $30m, according to current estimates.

(2) To what extent, if any, is it proposed that the users of the natural gas provide a proportion of the cost of this construction.

(3) Has it been agreed that the amount provided by users should not be more than 10 per cent higher than the Sydney tariff.

Senator Gareth Evans —The answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

(1) If a decision were made to construct a natural gas pipeline from Young to Bathurst, Orange and Lithgow, it has been estimated that the cost would be about $35m (at current prices).

(2) If the pipeline were constructed and operated by the Pipeline Authority, the Commonwealth instrumentality responsible for the construction and operation of natural gas pipelines, the Authority would be required to recover all of the costs involved over the period of contract. The tariff payable by gas users would be a matter for negotiation or determination by the organisation or organisations responsible for reticulation, subject to any price controls imposed by the State Government.

(3) No.