Tracey Joynson

Power prices hidden in union ‘blackout’: LNP

QUEENSLAND'S future power bills are being hidden by a "union-led blackout", the LNP has claimed.

A budget estimates hearing on Friday was told that Ergon Energy and Energex had applied to collect $2.2 billion more than the Australian Energy Regulator had proposed they could take.

Energex chief Terry Effeney told the committee the AER had made a mistake in their determination - which Energex's submission would correct.

He said their submissions, while higher than the AER's draft ruling, would lead to lower, or stable, prices than in recent years.

"As our revised submission requests lower revenues (than in recent years), you could expect to see real reductions to customers in network pricing across this period," Mr Effeney said.

But shadow energy minister Andrew Powell said the Opposition's questioning on power prices had been shut down and pointed to Energy Minister Mark Bailey's Electrical Trades Union membership background.

"There are genuine concerns that Queensland consumers will be paying more for their electricity in the very near future," he told journalists.

"And when we tried to put questions to the committee, to the minister and to the heads of the government-owned corporations we were shut down.

"What we saw today was an ETU-led blackout. What we have left with today is the fact that Queensland consumers are still in the dark as to what they will be paying for electricity."

- APN NEWSDESK



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