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Electricity Privatisation in Australia - A Briefing Note

11 October 2012 By ASU

The ASU is hailing a recently published paper from the University of Sydney that supports the public ownership of the Australian electricity industry.

The briefing paper shows that it's not only service, jobs and regional employment that are affected, but it's financially more beneficial for the community and state governments not to privatise

The paper should be read by all in the industry and politicians that think privatisation is a good idea.

The paper substantiates ASU Branches and National Office opposition and campaigns to stop privatisation and the arguments we have used as well as the previous ASU papers and submissions.

Highlights of Dr Phillip Toner's briefing note include:

  • Supports the view that financially it's better for state governments to keep public assets.
  • The rationale for government ownership and provision of electricity infrastructure remains strong.
  • Retention value of electricity assets in government ownership greatly exceeds sale value.
  • The fallacies of electricity privatisation.
  • Privatisation results in a major reduction in training of trades and gives rise to skill shortages.
  • Privatisation adversely affects the level and type of R&D.
  • The electricity regulatory system exposes abuse of market power but also creates perverse incentives for private investors that undermine efficiency, reliability and equity.
  • Who owns the Australian electricity industry.

ASU Assistant National Secretary Greg McLean OAM said, "I am pleased to see the briefing note as it supports many of the issues the community, Union and political parties have campaigned on or built policy around, to keep public sector assets for the benefit of all Australians and their communities. Dr Toner's briefing note should be read by ASU members in electricity and other areas of public ownership, including local government, railways and water industries, plus the communities and politicians that have supported anti-privatisation campaigns. The paper is well worth circulating and passing onto those interested in the privatisation debate or those committed to public sector ownership."

Related Documents: icon Electricity Privatisation in Australia - A briefing note 2012

Contact Details
Name: Greg McLean, ASU Assistant National Secretary
Telephone: 0419 796 801