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The National Grid Corporation a new mega bureaucracy?



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MEDIA RELEASE fiĀ«*t 0 ? c & c /i& l w . p . LEADER OF THE NATIONAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA

SHADOW MINISTER FOR ENERGY AND RESOURCES MEMBER FOR FARRER

Enquiries Parliament House Canberra, A.C.T. 2600. Phone (06) 277 4058 Fax (06) 277 2052

The National Grid Corporation A New Mega Bureaucracy?

Shadow Minister for Energy and Resources, Tim Fischer MP, today welcomed the launch of the Government's Discussion Paper on the National Electricity Strategy.

"The Coalition supports the concept of a National Electricity Grid and of a National Grid Corporation to manage it. But not the sort of corporation Minister Alan Griffiths wants."

"Additionally I question the need for the National Electricity Industry Council."

"The Coalition announced its policy for an Australian Electricity Grid, or AUSELGRID, in 1991. The Government subsequently adopted this policy initiative."

"The need for a national grid is now widely accepted. Development of a National Electricity Grid is an essential step in bringing the efficiency of the Australian electricity industry up to that of world best practice.

The Industry Commission estimated that if the electricity industry's performance was as good as international best practice, then national output would expand by around $2.25 billion annually, 8000 jobs would be created and household disposable income would increase by around $300 per year."

"So there is no disagreement about the need for a national grid.

"The Coalition's disagreement with the government is on what sort of corporation should manage the national grid."

"Under the Coalition's policy, the national grid would be a mixture of private and government owned assets operated from a major control centre or centres."

COMMONWEALTH PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARY MICAH PTO

"Such a system allows regional and local operation and maintenance of transmission lines, and provides for some element of competition in the transmission area of the industry, while at the same time achieving all the benefits of coordinated and efficient operation of a National Grid."

"In contrast, the Government's concept is to have one large, powerful, bureaucratic monopoly owning, operating, and maintaining all of the transmission lines necessary to form a National Grid."

"The Coalition maintains that part of the benefits that should accrue from reforming the electricity supply industry will be lost if the Federal Government's proposal is adopted - consumed in the inefficiencies and running costs associated with running another mammoth, costly, bureaucratic Commonwealth Corporation."

"With one large Commonwealth corporation owning all the grid assets, as Minister Griffiths proposes, there will be no competition within the grid and little incentive to improve efficiency in the management and operation of the grid."

"The generators will become more efficient, due to the competition introduced into the generation sector of the industry by the national grid, but the distribution system will not."

"The National Grid Corporation will be another Commonwealth Government monopoly. Why doesn't the Government learn? It was only during the life of this present Government that they realised they had to provide competition for Telecom. So why start another bureaucratic monopoly monster?"

"The Labor Government is being controlled by the bureaucracy and the unions, both of which favour large bureaucratic organisations - more positions for bureaucrats, union dues payers and union office holders!"

For more information contact 06 277 4225

27 May 1992

PTO