Megan Woods, the Minister of Energy and Resources, wouldn’t give a guarantee in Parliament today to cut power price rises but will wait and see what the Electricity Price Review finds, National’s Energy and Resources spokesperson Jonathan Young says.
“What we are seeing is a Minister who has raised expectations over bringing electricity prices down but has now passed the buck to the review, shirking any responsibility for her promises.
“This is yet another example of how the Labour-led Government are mismanaging energy costs for New Zealanders which will make it harder for Kiwi households to get by. It’s clear that we either need less talk or more walk from the Minister.
“They have previously promised but failed to deliver an inquiry on the Refinery to Auckland pipeline leak, and talked tough on petrol companies, yet we have only seen the price of petrol continue to rise. They have also mismanaged their Winter Energy Payment scheme, by giving money away to people who don’t need it.
“From the massive increases in petrol prices, largely driven by new fuel taxes, to banning offshore exploration, these policies and decisions will only result in gas becoming scarcer and will mean higher energy costs.
“While the review panel found that residential electricity prices have risen 79 per cent in the past 28 years, it should be noted that in the past three years power prices have actually dropped.
“If the Minister wants to see power prices come down, she needs to say how. Either she wants to shift costs away from residences to businesses or give power companies a haircut.
“The Minister should be upfront with her plans and intentions for the energy and resources sectors lest she continues steamrolling industry with bad policy and writing cheques that end up costing hard working New Zealanders.”