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Next steps outlined for the Commission’s decision on Powerco

22 June 2015
Release No. 115

Next steps outlined for the Commission’s decision on Powerco’s application for $1.32 billion in lines network investment

The Commerce Commission has today released a process paper detailing the next steps for assessing lines company Powerco’s application proposing price increases to meet the cost of its planned $1.32 billion investment in its electricity lines network.

Powerco is proposing significant works on its North Island network over the next five years to account for population growth as well as to replace or upgrade ageing assets including lines, poles and substations. Its planned $1.32 billion investment represents an increase of about 55% compared to what it invested in its network over the past five years.

This investment would be recovered through price increases affecting 320,000 homes and businesses in Manawatu, Rangitikei, Whanganui, Taranaki, Tararua, Wairarapa, Coromandel, Eastern and Southern Waikato and Western Bay of Plenty.

Powerco estimates its current plan would increase lines charges by 79 cents a week (up to $41 a year) for the average household. Price increases would vary across regions depending on the level of investment Powerco makes in each area.

An infographic outlining Powerco’s proposed investment can be found here.

Commission Deputy Chair Sue Begg said Powerco’s proposal represented a significant investment and it was important that consumers and other interested parties took the opportunity to have their say.

“Having received Powerco’s application we now have nine months to review its proposal and make a decision on what level of investment is in consumers’ best interests. As part of this process it is important we hear from Powerco customers, large or small, on what they think of Powerco’s proposal as our decision will affect the prices they pay and the level of quality they receive,” Ms Begg said.

“We have released today a short paper that sets out the process we will be following. Our first step will be to issue a consultation paper in August seeking public feedback, followed by a draft decision in November and final decision no later than 29 March 2018.”

A copy of the process paper can be found here.


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