Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Supreme Court sides with ComCom in Vector stoush

Supreme Court sides with ComCom in Vector stoush

Nov 15 (BusinessDesk) - Auckland electricity and gas network owner Vector has lost its final appeal against the way the Commerce Commission set starting prices for the new regime regulating prices for its monopoly services.

But Vector will live to fight another day on more substantive issues being argued in a High Court merits review which has been running in parallel to the legal arguments over how the commission has applied its regulatory powers.

The commission welcomed the unanimous Supreme Court decision confirming it is not required to determine a methodology for the various inputs it uses to determine the starting prices for regulated prices of monopoly electricity and gas networks.

However, the court rejected the commission's earlier arguments that it could not have done so. Instead, it confirms the commission may choose to do so if it wishes, giving Vector a minor win in a long fought action that it has otherwise lost.

"It's a bit disappointing," Vector chief executive Simon Mackenzie told BusinessDesk. "We move on now to saying the starting price adjustment is part of the merits appeal process."

Hearings on the merits appeal, which involves other monopoly network providers including ports, airports and national grid operator Transpower, have been ongoing in recent weeks in the Wellington High Court, with decisions likely early next year.

"The materiality of the merits decision is the more substantive" for Vector, said Mackenzie. "If you see big adjustments (to starting prices), there must be big changes to the inputs that we need to understand.".

Commission chair Mark Berry said the Supreme Court ruling "finally allows the commission to complete aspects of the regulatory regime which will promote the certainty that the legislation anticipated" for both electricity distribution and gas pipeline businesses.

The final report on the reset of electricity default price-quality paths is scheduled for Nov. 30, with a final decision on the default price-quality path for gas pipeline businesses is scheduled for release in February.

Mackenzie said the appeals were an important part of bedding in a new process, but Berry said the delays caused by Vector's actions "had the effect of allowing some businesses to continue to charge their customers too much", while "some businesses which we believe should be able to charge more in order to invest in their networks have not been able to increase prices."

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Power Outages, Roads Close: Easter Storm Moving Down Country

The NZ Transport Agency says storm conditions at the start of the Easter break are making driving hazardous in Auckland and Northland and it advises people extreme care is needed on the regions’ state highways and roads... More>>

ALSO:

Houses (& Tobacco) Lead Inflation: CPI Up 0.3% In March Quarter

The consumers price index (CPI) rose 0.3 percent in the March 2014 quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. Higher tobacco and housing prices were partly countered by seasonally cheaper international air fares, vegetables, and package holidays. More>>

ALSO:

Notoriously Reliable Predictions: Budget To Show Rise In Full-Time Income To 2018: English

This year’s Budget will forecast wage increases through to 2018 amounting to a $10,500 a year increase in average full time earnings over six years to $62,200 a year, says Finance Minister Bill English in a speech urging voters not to “put all of this at risk” by changing the government. More>>

ALSO:

Prices Up, Volume Down: March NZ House Sales Drop 10% As Loan Curbs Bite

New Zealand house sales dropped 10 percent in March from a year earlier as the Reserve Bank’s restrictions on low-equity mortgages continue to weigh on sales of cheaper property. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Chorus To Appeal Copper Pricing Judgment

Chorus will appeal a High Court ruling upholding the Commerce Commission’s determination setting the regulated prices on the telecommunications network operator’s copper lines. More>>

ALSO:

Earlier:

Cars: Precautionary Recalls Announced For Toyota Vehicles

Toyota advises that a number of its New Zealand vehicles are affected by a series of precautionary global recalls. Toyota New Zealand General Manager Customer Services Spencer Morris stressed that the recalls are precautionary. More>>

ALSO:

'Gardening Club': Air Freight Cartel Nets Almost $12 Million In Penalties

The High Court in Auckland has today ordered Swiss company Kuehne + Nagel International AG to pay a penalty of $3.1 million plus costs for breaches of the Commerce Act. Kuehne + Nagel’s penalty brings the total penalties ordered in this case to $11.95 million ... More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: Revenue Below Projections

Core Crown tax revenue has increased by $1.9 billion (or 5.0%) compared to the same time last year. However this was $1.1 billion less than expected and is reflected across most tax types, continuing the pattern of recent months. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news