Users of government-owned electricity networks in NSW and Queensland are paying twice as much as consumers of privately owned electricity companies in Victoria, according to a new a report.
The report, commissioned by the Energy Users Association of Australia and obtained by The Australian, provides a scathing comparison of energy networks in Australia – accusing state governments of generating mega profits through dividends and income taxes, while providing the government-run distribution networks with access to cheap capital from the state treasuries.
It also argues state-owned distributors spend money wastefully and avoid cost-cutting. Meanwhile, they have more frequent and longer outages than private networks that operate in Victoria and South Australia.
By 2014, the revenues per customers in NSW and Queensland will be twice the level they are in Victoria and 1.5 times the level in South Australia.
Privatization would improve efficiency and costs, it concludes.
The report findings follow concerns recently voiced by the government’s climate change adviser Ross Garnaut who found government-owned businesses had reason to “gold-plate” their networks.
TRUenergy recently warned consumers that household power bills would double over six years with the introduction of a carbon price, estimating households would face a further $300 hike on average if a carbon price were introduced at $20 a tonne.
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