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Contact Energy Profit Obscene

30 April 2004

Contact Energy Profit Obscene

Grey Power National President, Graham Stairmand, said “The steep rise in Contact Energy’s six monthly profit was obscene and a clear indication that the competitive market in New Zealand was not working”.

He said “The 63% increase in profits was primarily due to retail price increases, which further confirms that the big five power companies are out of control”.

Mr Stairmand said “Contact Energy should simplify their current wide range of tariffs, which is very confusing to the ordinary domestic consumer. The only certainty today in electricity is that retail prices will continue to increase and that this Government’s political sensitivity to rising retail prices is very low.

Because of the country’s size, the competitive market will remain relatively benign”. He said, “The Government has had five years to sort out the competitive market, but as long as record profits are received from it’s SOEs they choose to ignore the need for further regulation. Price increases hit the most disadvantaged people in the community - those on fixed incomes, particularly the elderly”, Mr Stairmand said.

“Again this winter, domestic consumers will have the choice between warmth and food, and that is an indictment on the present Government”.


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