13 September 2017
Transcript - #2017182, 2017

Doorstop interview, Canberra

SUBJECTS: The Turnbull Government’s comprehensive plan to put downward pressure on electricity prices for households and businesses; Labor’s no-coal coalition led by ‘No Coal Joel’.

QUESTION:

[Inaudible] is it no more?

TREASURER:

I don't know what that is based on. I have no idea what that is based on. Honestly I think sometimes people get ahead of themselves. The Government is working through the issues out of the Finkel Report and we will continue to do that. So, speculators can speculate. The Government is just getting on with the job of delivering downward pressure on rising electricity prices for families and business.

QUESTION:

The CET has been the sticking point, it is the one recommendation that the Government hasn't committed to, is the Government bowing to The Nationals because they are not clean, you know, comfortable with the Clean Energy Target?

TREASURER:

I think all of that speculation and commentary is just hyperventilating frankly. We are just working the problem. We commissioned the report. We are working through the outcomes of that report. We are doing our own work on these issues. It is important to put in place an investment framework which encourages investment in new supply of energy but that includes maintaining, frankly, the energy supply that we have and the Labor Party's no-coal ban on arriving at an investment framework I think is very unhelpful. I think it is very unhelpful. I don't think it does add certainty into the sector and I think the Labor Party has to get beyond the ideology and focus on the economics and the engineering, which is what we are doing, and we will continue to work patiently and steadily towards delivering a durable investment framework.

QUESTION:

We keep hearing about investment uncertainty being raised as a problem, is the Government treating the CET with some urgency?

TREASURER:

We are working very, very hard to deliver an investment program that will deliver the certainty that is necessary, that encompasses an all-of-the-above approach when it comes to the resources that are required to drive our energy sector. We don't rule out coal, like the Labor Party does. We do embrace renewables. We are able to work right across the spectrum and we are not going to provide any of these, or place any of these, ideological bans on how you arrive at an investment framework that is durable. So, we are not playing politics with this. That's the Labor Party's job.

QUESTION:

There are calls for you to pull the gas trigger – will you do it?

TREASURER:

We have a mechanism in place for how that is done and there are a series of steps you have to follow under that mechanism and that is exactly what we are doing.