Category: Electricity Energy and Utilities / State Parliament

Extra $2b for poles and wires has Premier hinting at budget boost

11:16 UTC+8 May 11, 2017 | Sarah Gerathy

NSW Government says it has raised billions of dollars more than expected from the privatisation of the state's poles and wires businesses, after completing the long term lease of Endeavour Energy.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced her Government raked in $7.6 billion in gross proceeds by leasing 50.4 per cent of Endeavour to the Australian-led Advanced Energy Consortium.

The winning bidder includes Macquarie Infrastructure, AMP Capital, Canada's British Columbia Investment Management Corporation and the Qatar Investment Authority.

Net proceeds from the sale have been put at $2.9 billion.

The Premier said the cumulative net proceeds from the leases of the poles and wires businesses were about $2 billion more than anticipated.

She said that would allow the Government to spend more on infrastructure than the $20 billion it promised when it pitched the poles and wires privatisation to voters at the 2015 election.

"What this successful transaction does is allow us to have extra head room in our budget [and] extra opportunity for us to look at other projects," Ms Berejiklian said.

She said a number of projects would also be accelerated because of the strong results.

Ms Berejiklian thanked voters for backing the poles and wires sell-off by backing her Government at the polls.

"You gave us your trust, you gave us our approval to proceed with these transactions … and we don't take that trust lightly," Ms Berejiklian said.

Treasurer Dom Perrottet was tight-lipped about what new infrastructure projects might be on the cards, or which ones might be accelerated.


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