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Australian chemistry industry supports ACCC call for more gas supply - 01 March 2018

Australian chemistry industry supports ACCC call for more gas supply


The Australian chemistry industry has voiced its support for the strong statements made by ACCC Chairman Rob Sims about the lack of southern east coast gas supply.

Chemistry Australia CEO Samantha Read said that Victorian and NSW businesses paying up to $4 more per gigajoule of gas, is an avoidable and unacceptable threat to the states’ economies and jobs.

“The gas crisis is still very real for Australian manufacturers. The consistent feedback from our members is that gas prices are still rising, and that they are high comparative to other global markets in which they operate,” said Ms Read.

“Shifts of a dollar or two per gigajoule don’t illustrate the full impact to businesses. The actual dollar effect is in the hundreds of thousands, and in some cases tens of millions, added to input costs.

“We have been consistently calling for more supply from more suppliers, into a more transparent market. There has been significant progress on one of these three critical factors.

“The work undertaken by the ACCC over the past year has improved gas market transparency. It has also validated concerns our members have had regarding market behaviour, pricing and contract terms.

“Southern state governments must now address the lack of gas supply and range of suppliers, if we are to make further progress on the crisis.

“There is at least one major plant in Victoria sitting mothballed, because there simply is not enough affordable gas. This is wasted economic potential that impacts negatively right through Australia’s value chains. While the impact on reinvestment is very visible, what we are not seeing is the lost opportunity.

“The business of chemistry is a high value adding industry, supplying critical inputs into 109 of Australia’s 111 industries. Every job in the industry creates five more in related supply chains.

“It is imperative that there is movement in southern state policies leading to more gas supply and exploration. The ACCC’s recommendation for a case-by-case assessment of projects, provides for responsible and science-based consideration of each opportunity.

“The past year has seen a marked increase in public awareness of the gas and energy crisis, and the need for energy reform. There have also been short-term measures to stave off some of the immediate effects of the gas crisis. It’s now critical that governments act to increase supply,” Ms Read said.


Gas is particularly essential to the business of chemistry. It’s important for process energy, and it is also a non-substitutable ingredient for advanced manufacturing. The Australian chemistry industry uses 10% of Australia’s domestic gas for its molecular properties to create a huge range of products essential to our everyday lives. These include fertilisers for our crops, cleaning products for health and hygiene in our homes and hospitals, and smart packaging to keep our food fresher for longer.


Media contacts:
Claire Selby – or 0448 028 876
Krista Imberger – or 0439 318 290


Chemistry Australia is the pre-eminent national body representing the $40 billion Australian chemistry industry, one of the largest manufacturing sectors in the country. The industry employs more than 60,000 people and contributes more than $11.6 billion to GDP in industry value add. Members of Chemistry Australia are positioned across the entire value chain including manufacturers, importers and distributors, logistics and supply chain partners, raw material suppliers, fabricators, compounders, recyclers, research, academia and service providers to the industry. These businesses range from small family-owned companies to leading national and multinational enterprises.



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