MP hand delivering letters to Japanese energy companies
FEDERAL Member for Dawson George Christensen will hand-deliver letters from the Coalition Government's Resources and Northern Australia Minister Matt Canavan to major Japanese energy companies today and tomorrow, seeking their investment in new HELE (High Efficiency Low Energy) coal-fired power stations in Australia.
"Japanese industry and government leaders will be invited to consider investing in HELE coal-fired power stations in Australia to help address our high electricity costs, and this invitation is coming directly from the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Matt Canavan," Mr Christensen said.
"Minister Canavan has entrusted me with the task of hand-delivering these letters, which come on the back of the ACCC's report into our high electricity costs which makes the recommendation that the Federal Government consider providing finance to make an investment in clean-coal technology more attractive."
Mr Christensen is one of a small group of MPs travelling at the invitation of the Minerals Council of Australia, which is covering all expenses.
Mr Christensen said the approach from Resources Minister Canavan demonstrated that, on the back of the ACCC's recent report Restoring Electricity and Australia's Competitive Advantage, the Coalition Government was true to its word on being technology neutral and was considering HELE coal-fired power stations.
"We're asking the world leaders in clean-coal technology in Japan to consider investing here," Mr Christensen said.
"In his letter, the Resources Minister states that the ACCC report: 'was commissioned as one of the steps taken by the Australian Government to address the challenges that high energy prices have placed on household budgets and business viability'.
"The Government will also consider the ACCC's recommendation to provide finance to assist project developers with such options.
"The Minister's letter notes that the ACCC report considered: 'there is a role for the Australian Government in providing support for such projects in appropriate circumstances'."
"Minister Canavan further states: 'the examples that your company can provide with the installation of proven technology that delivers reliable, dispatchable power with lower emissions at an affordable price will be an important factor in these considerations'.
The letter goes on to state: "Not only is world demand for coal growing but more importantly that demand is focused on the Asian region, which we supply. The demand is coming from new coal-fired power plants that require high-quality coal and that's what we specialise in. Japan is also considered a pioneer of HELE technology and I would welcome you to examine any opportunities to potentially invest in new technology in Australia to address this shortfall issue."
Mr Christensen will deliver letters to the heads of Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC) chairman and JOGMEC executive vice president, and also to the Director Coal Division of Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.