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

 


Meridian suffers low SI wholesale prices in Dec 1/4

Meridian suffers low South Island wholesale prices in Dec quarter

By Pattrick Smellie

Feb. 1 (BusinessDesk) - Meridian Energy achieved barely half the average price for wholesale electricity as its Auckland-based competitor, MightyRiverPower, the state-owned power company's update for the December quarter shows.

The average price per Megawatt hour per customer for Meridian over the three months was $31.21 per Megawatt hour, while MRP said in its quarterly update earlier this week it had outperformed the market and achieved an average price of $66.25 per MWh.

Both state-owned generator-retailers are slated for partial privatisation, possibly both this year. The timing depends on the outcome of a Supreme Court hearing that wraps up in Wellington today, in which the New Zealand Maori Council is seeking to block the sales.

While both are large-scale hydro generators, Meridian's assets are in the South Island while MRP's are all on the Waikato River, fed by Lake Taupo.

During the period, South Island catchments were at times full to overflowing, while Taupo was never as full, suggesting some explanation for better prices from North Island hydro assets.

Meridian also suffered 20 days in the quarter when work on upgrading the high voltage direct current link across Cook Strait had caused "periods of high price separation between the North and South Islands."

Price separation is where the national wholesale market for electricity is broken in two by constraints on the link between the two islands. Completion of the $672 million Transpower upgrade been delayed twice. It is now expected to commission in late April.

The commentary confirms Meridian is one of the few participants in the wholesale electricity market pleased with an unexpectedly radical solution from the Electricity Authority to redistribute the costs of the national grid among users.

"Meridian is particularly pleased that the EA's analysis supports a change to pricing for the HVDC link."

The existing charging regime loads the whole cost of the north-south link on southern generators, even though northern generators get benefit from it.
In the same quarter a year earlier, Meridian's average price per MWh ran at $60.88.

Total customer numbers at 284,673 were steady, and retail churn is dropping at around 18 percent.

Meridian also confirmed it is considering the future of its A$500 million investment in the Macarthur wind farm in a joint venture in Victoria, Australia.

The bond-like structure of the arrangement could make it profitable for Meridian to exit while interest rates are low. However, "no decision is imminent," the company said.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Season Ends: Is Whitebaiting Sustainable?

The whitebait fry - considered a delicacy by many - are the juveniles of five species of galaxiid, four of which are considered threatened or declining. The SMC asked freshwater experts for their views on the sustainability of the whitebait fishery and whether we're doing enough to monitor the five species of galaxiid that make up whitebait. More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: Smaller-Than-Expected Four-Month Deficit

The New Zealand government's accounts recorded a smaller-than-forecast deficit in the first four months of the fiscal year on a higher-than-expected inflow of corporate and goods and services tax. More>>

ALSO:

On For Christmas: KiwiRail Ferries Back In Full Operation After Quake

KiwiRail’s Interislander ferries are back in full operation for the first time since the Kaikoura earthquake, with the railspan that allows rail wagons to be loaded on the Aratere now restored. More>>

ALSO:

Comerce Commission Investigation: Prosecutions Over Steel Mesh Labelling

Steel & Tube Holdings, along with two other companies, will be prosecuted by the Commerce Commission following the regulator's investigation into seismic steel mesh, while Fletcher Building's steel division has been given a warning. More>>

ALSO:

Wine: 20% Of Marlborough Storage Tanks Damaged By Quake

An estimated 20 percent of wine storage tanks in the Marlborough region, the country’s largest wine producing area, have been damaged by the impact of the recent Kaikoura earthquake. More>>

ALSO:

ACC: Levy Recommendations For 2017 – 2019 Period

• For car owners, a 13% reduction in the average Motor Vehicle levy • For businesses, a 10% reduction in the average Work levy, and changes to workplace safety incentive products • For employees, due to an increase in claims volumes and costs, a 3% increase in the Earners’ levy. More>>

Women's Affairs: Government Accepts Recommendations On Pay Equity

The Government will update the Equal Pay Act and amend the Employment Relations Act to implement recommendations of the Joint Working Group on Pay Equity. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news