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Another Bureaucratic Committee

Another Bureaucratic Committee

The Government's response to the energy crisis announced no more than the establishment of another bureaucratic commission with the power to levy consumers to the tune of $200 million a year, ACT New Zealand Deputy Leader Ken Shirley said today.

"By the Government's own admission, the necessary portfolio of reserve generation is expected to be built up over the next three years. This means the response will do nothing this year to alleviate the power crisis, and very little over the next two years.

"The Labour Government has been in power now for almost four years. The problem was predictable, and they have been caught out.

"The worst aspect is that this is a bureaucratic response based on more regulation that can only dampen pricing signals, rather than using the market to achieve the necessary balance between supply and demand of electricity.

"The Government has managed to do nothing to address the destructive nature of the state-owned generators, which now dominate generation, and have developed into entrenched regional monopolies.

"Domestic consumers continue to be shielded from pricing signals, with the large industrial and commercial users carrying the can on volatile pricing spikes. This can only result in a cutback in industrial production, with reduced export earnings and a loss of jobs.

"This Government is trying to run its "Knowledge Economy" on candle power. Forming a bureaucratic committee just isn't going to stop the lights from going out," Mr Shirley said.

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