The NSW Liberal-National party coalition secured a convincing victory on Saturday, despite a massive campaign against its power privatisation plan. The NSW Coalition win was despite a swing to Labor of just under 9 per cent, giving the party a predicted win of 34 seats to the Coalition’s 53.
The Government has pledged to lease half of the remaining state-owned electricity assets to the private sector for 99 years to raise funds for infrastructure. Treasury reports stated that consumers had been punished over many years while the businesses were in public hands through over-investment with price hikes of more than 60 per cent in the past five years.
Premier Mike Baird conceded Labor’s campaign against the electricity sell off had cost the Government votes. “I believe it was the biggest scare campaign in the state’s history, and as a result we lost some good people tonight,” he said.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop congratulated the Baird Government and said the result showed voters could be willing to embrace reforms. “I think it does underscore what we’ve been trying to do and that is explain to the Australian people that reforms are necessary,” she said.