• Max Bradford

Energy Minister Max Bradford today rejected claims by power companies that electricity prices would rise under the Coalition Government's reforms package.

"The claims by the Electricity Supply Association (representing most power companies) are yet another scare campaign typifying the ESA's approach to a better deal for consumers," Mr Bradford said from Geneva where he is attending an ILO conference.

"Even if their claims were true, the ESA's own proposal for corporate separation of their lines and energy trading businesses (rather than the Coalition Government's proposal of ownership separation) would bring the same results.

"The ESA's approach simply proves the need for competition from people outside the industry," he said.

Mr Bradford said the Government's electricity reforms are all about lower power prices for all consumers, not protecting the vested interests of power companies.