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PACIA welcomes ACCC findings from the East Coast Gas Market Inquiry - 22 April 2016

PACIA welcomes the outcomes of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) Inquiry highlighting the need for greater transparency and consistency across the East Coast Wholesale Gas Market, as well as new gas supply.

PACIA CEO Samantha Read said, “We have been calling for a gas market that is deep in capacity, liquid in supply, transparent, informed, competitive, and with adequate price discovery. It is significant that the ACCC recommendations support these principles, and that the concerns of commercial and industrial gas users regarding supply and cost issues have largely been found to be correct.

“The transparency and competitiveness of the domestic gas market is critical to secure investment in downstream industries that value-add to Australia’s gas. The recommendations announced by the ACCC to address the market failures will help business confidence. These findings must now be backed by action.

“Now is the time for State Governments to reconsider current moratoria on gas development, to open up opportunities for new investment. We also support the ACCC’s call for consistent and public reporting of information and assumptions regarding domestic gas reserves.

“We support the ACCC’s focus on achieving a balanced, market-based response to ensure new supplies of gas are brought into a properly functioning east coast gas market. This will help Australia take full advantage of all the economic opportunities that Australia’s gas can offer, including gas used for export of liquefied natural gas (LNG), domestic industrial feedstocks and process energy, and commercial and residential energy.

“Gas is not just about energy. The Australian chemistry industry uses 10% of all Australian domestic gas for its molecular properties to create, through chemistry, a huge range of materials and products.

“This is what we call gas as a feedstock. The industry transforms the components of gas to make fertilisers to increase agricultural yields, piping to securely supply water and gas to industrial and residential users, and packaging to keep food safe and fresher for longer.

“There is significant demand for the products of chemistry in Asia, leading to the development of significant exporting industries. We are excited about the opportunities for Australian advanced manufacturing, enabled by Australian gas and chemistry, to meet unprecedented global and domestic population growth.

“These are exactly the types of opportunities that will drive the next phase of development, growth and innovation in Australia. But this won’t happen without the certainty required for investment,” said Ms Read.

The ACCC Inquiry is one part of a broader action plan by the COAG Energy Council to undertake long-term reforms to support investment and build more resilient gas markets. PACIA welcomes the continuation of this coordinated approach.

“The next step to ensure we capture future investment opportunities, must be implementation of the ACCC recommendations by the Territories and States through the COAG Gas Market Development Plan process,” said Ms Read.

 

Media contacts:
Krista Imberger – kimberger@chemistryaustralia.org.au or 0439 318 290
Claire Selby – cselby@chemistryaustralia.org.au or 0448 028 876
 

PACIA is the national voice for the strategically significant $45 billion Australian chemistry industry, one of the largest manufacturing sectors in the country. The industry employs more than 64,000 people and contributes more than $11.5 billion to GDP in industry value add. Ranging in size from small family-owned businesses to national and multi-national enterprises, PACIA members include chemicals manufacturers, importers and distributors, logistics and supply chain partners, raw material suppliers, plastics fabricators and compounders, chemicals and plastics recyclers and service providers to the industry.

 

 

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