Policy & Politics |

Energy crisis worse than GFC, needs action not debate

Embargoed until 11.59pm, 19 June 2017

Energy crisis worse than GFC, needs action not debate

COSBOA today has called on all political parties to agree on an energy policy that will lead Australia out of a crisis that is threatening to destroy businesses, increase unemployment and create substantial price increases for basic commodities and necessities.

Peter Strong, CEO of COSBOA stated today “the small business community, indeed the whole business community is facing increasing energy costs of such measure that business plans are in tatters and cash flow in ruins. The same businesses are also concerned that they can no longer rely on access to power and need to not just have back-up power sources but in some cases further back-up reserves as well. We are in danger of becoming uncompetitive in the international marketplace. This is an unprecedented crisis and must be confronted now.”

COSBOA has developed its first Energy Policy document as a response. The lack of action from governments, state as well as federal, has left our economy under threat. There must be bipartisan support for the Finkel Review recommendations. The policy is HERE.

Mr Strong added “the members of the back bench of the government must support action. We’ve had enough talk and chest beating. The business community was promised that a change of government would see power prices drop but the opposite has occurred. Inaction and laissez-faire economics and policies have created this mess and we must act now.  COAG must hold an urgent meeting this week and not leave that meeting until decisions have been made that will start to fix the problem.  Power costs must drop, gas reserves must be released and made available to Australian energy suppliers and businesses, the Finkel Review must be actioned.”

COSBOA will be active in the ACCC review of electricity prices recently announced to ensure that ideologues and economic dinosaurs do not have the influence that they have used in the past to create this situation. We will hold state governments to account for some of their decisions that have added unbearable cost to business operations.  The NSW government in particular must undo the outcome of its recent court action against the Australian Energy Regulator that added some $3b to the cost of power for residents and businesses in their state and in the ACT.

See policy HERE