Regulation could raise power prices: Spark
Network operator Spark Infrastructure has warned that further regulatory changes to the energy market risk raising consumer power prices as it increasingly shifts to renewables.
Spark, which lifted first-half profit 19 per cent to $58.1 million, on Monday said many of what it called "an unprecedented level of concurrent and overlapping reviews ... seek to undermine the integrity of the regulatory system".
Highlighting the Australian Energy Regulator's proposed rate of return guideline and regulatory tax allowance review, Spark - which operates in NSW, Victoria and SA - said changes could be to the detriment of consumers.
"We are concerned that, in an industry that requires significant investment to transition efficiently to a new energy future and to maintain a focus on energy price affordability, these changes will add considerable risk and uncertainty to the process," chief executive Rick Francis said in a statement.
"These changes and continued uncertainty have the potential to add significantly to cost, and risk negating the good work that our businesses have been doing to reduce network costs."
Nonetheless, Mr Francis said Spark was committed to the transition to a low carbon economy.
"We're also seeing continued growth in (NSW network) TransGrid's renewable energy connections business in NSW, and we see this as an area of ongoing investment and growth," Mr Francis said.
"We are not only delivering more affordable network services to customers now but we are also investing wisely to help Australia's transition to a lower carbon emissions footprint for the future."
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