Canegrowers CEO Dan Galligan said even with the government intervention, power prices are unsustainable for many regional Queenslanders.
Canegrowers CEO Dan Galligan said even with the government intervention, power prices are unsustainable for many regional Queenslanders. Lee Constable

Electricity price hike big issue for area's growers

THE Canegrowers organisation believes the State Government's intervention to cut regulated retail power price rises proposed by the Queensland Competition Authority proves it could curb soaring costs if it wanted to.

Canegrowers CEO Dan Galligan said even with the government intervention, power prices are unsustainable for many regional Queenslanders.

The Competition Authority last month released its decision on regulated retail prices for regional Queensland, revealing the annual bill for a typical customer on the main residential tariff was set to increase by 7.1% from $1490 to $1595 for 2017-18.

For a customer on the main small business tariff, the yearly increase was expected to be 8.2%, from $2449 to $2649.

The government intervened on Thursday to slash those figures by more than half.

"The Premier's intervention means power prices paid by irrigators will increase by 5% from July 1," Mr Galligan said.

"It means electricity costs for farmers who grow food and fibre for Australians and export markets have gone up more than 130% since the pricing system changed nine years ago."

Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt said rising electricity prices are a major problem for residents and businesses.



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