10 Feb 2014

Report faults Labour-Greens power plan

8:27 pm on 10 February 2014

A new report commissioned by Business New Zealand has found fault with Opposition plans to overturn the electricity market, saying the NZ Power" proposal won't work as well as the present electricity market system.

Power poles.


The Labour Party and the Greens want to substantially replace the present market with a state agency to control the sale of electricity.

The report by Sapere Research Group, a team of experts including veteran analyst Toby Stevenson, says the electricity market is now more competitive than at any time in the past.

It says the NZ Power plan introducing government control would put at risk gains made under the present market system and would not be able to deliver on a commitment to reduce prices.

The report says the majority of consumers are now benefiting from competition with the ability to switch retailers to get lower prices.

In releasing the report, Business New Zealand says the electricity market should be retained but pricing should become more transparent.

It says too little has been done to address problems of energy hardship for some consumers finding it too costly to heat cold and damp houses and this should be investigated further.