|PM Gillard sticking her neck out for Holden|
As the Daily Telegraph wrote:
Now comes dramatic confirmation of the excessive power charges suffered throughout Australia. Our coal-rich nation, which logically should have the resources to generate cheap electricity for decades if not centuries, pays a remarkable 130 per cent more for electricity than does Canada, to give just one example.
Across Europe, in Asia and the South Pacific, the story is the same. Australia stands at the very top of the table when it comes to electricity costs.
And here's the really bad news. The federal Labor government's looming carbon tax will only make that painful margin between us and most of the rest of the world even larger.This evil "price" on carbon (dioxide) will hit everybody from Mining Millionaire Magnates to the poorest pensioner. Electricity is a component in everything you buy, everything you do. Manufacturing costs will rise, shopping centres must increase rents to provide lighting and cleaning in common areas.
Councils will have to increase rates causing another hit below the belt to the economy. Those of us who need to fly or can afford air fares as a luxury will also be affected. As Andrew Bolt writes:
The Municipal Association of Victoria estimates the carbon tax will add three per cent to bills, which could increase by up to 30 percent with other charges.
Power prices are likely to be higher than Government estimates and may increase further following a warning by Australia's largest power generator that it could be forced to reduce output to cut carbon costs.
The company says this could push up the price of electricity even more because of less power being available on the National Electricity Market.
Airlines have confirmed they will add a carbon tax surcharge to the cost of a ticket and small businesses may also be forced to increase their prices to the public.
At the same time China, the primary source of Australia's booming economy over the last few years is going through a growth slow-down. (From Business Spectator):
In China, manufacturing activity fell to a four-month low in March, HSBC bank said on Thursday, adding fuel to concerns over slowing growth in the world's second-largest economy.