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Comment on draft decision on grid upgrade

28 April 2006

Comment on draft decision on grid upgrade

Acting Energy Minister Trevor Mallard today made the following comment on the Electricity Commission's draft decision on Transpower's proposed grid upgrade.

"There is still a consultation process to be undertaken before a final decision is made, so as the acting energy minister I can not comment on the merits or otherwise of this draft decision as I can not influence this process.

"However, I would strongly urge the parties involved to continue constructive discussions on this issue to reach a satisfactory solution in the interests of meeting Auckland and Northland's future power needs.

"I would also urge other interested parties to respond to the commission's call for further feedback before a final decision is made.

"The government is keenly aware that ensuring ongoing security of electricity supply into Auckland and addressing any perception of lack of security are critical to New Zealand's economy. These issues must be addressed and the government is committed to ensuring this happens.

"The key for me will be achieving some consensus on the size and timing of the new transmission line. That is necessary for certainty, for both landowners and power users," Trevor Mallard said.

ENDS

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