Small business gouged and hung out to dry in Australia's energy crisis

While governments blame each other and strike deals for big business to minimise cost impacts, small businesses are being gouged and hung out to dry.

High energy users like manufacturers and hospitality businesses are casualties of a failed system.

It makes sense for heavy users to negotiate long-term contracts, but it's nearly impossible to meaningfully compare quotes without expert knowledge.

Consider the case of Victorian injection-moulding business and tool maker, PMG Engineering.

The company, which employs more than 30 people, is grappling with a 20 per cent spike in its electricity costs and the outlook is for a 180 per cent increase next financial year, excluding network charges. The estimated increase is more than $110,000 a year.

In addition, owner and managing director Gerard Suttie says electricity infrastructure charges have more than doubled in the past five years. He says it's difficult to compare quotes from retailers and he engaged a broker for this purpose. He explains the retailer can penalise his business if he uses less electricity than agreed under the contract. Read more

Kate Carnell - Brisbane Times - 19 July 2017


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