Legislators request clarity on economics of Nuclear Plant 4
By Adam Tyrsett Kuo, The China PostTAIPEI, Taiwan -- Kuomintang (KMT) lawmaker Ting Shou-chung (丁守中) said yesterday that a price will have to be paid regardless of whether the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant is scrapped or not; therefore, it is imperative to understand the specific costs involved, given that nuclear power comprises 18.6 percent of Taiwan's energy.
March 12, 2013, 12:19 am TWN
During an interpellation session at the Legislative Yuan, Ting asked that if electricity prices were to rise by 10 percent, how would GDP growth and the Consumer Price Index (CPI) be affected?
In response, Shih Su-mei (石素梅), minister of the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS), said that if electricity prices were to rise by 10 percent, the CPI would increase by 0.359 percentage points, while GDP growth would decrease by 0.13 percentage points.
KMT lawmaker Lu Shiow-yen (盧秀燕) pointed out that Shih's estimates were based on price fluctuations, and that she and other lawmakers propose to request that the Cabinet provide comprehensive information for the public's reference.
According to the proposal, the DGBAS and the Ministry of Economic Affairs are to provide a report, within one month, on whether or not a halt on the power plant's construction will affect electricity prices, as well as its effect on economic growth and the CPI.
The proposal is cosponsored by KMT lawmakers Alex Fai (費鴻泰), Lin Te-fu (林德福), Lee Guei-min (李貴敏), Lai Shyh-bao (賴士葆), Wong Chung-chun (翁重鈞), and Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Lee Ying-yuan (李應元).
Ting further asked Kuan Chung-ming (管中閔), minister of the Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD), what revelations the recent anti-nuclear protests provided.
In response, Kuan said that the government needs to step up its efforts to development renewable energy sources.
There are seven directions that the Cabinet could explore, Kuan said, adding that the government, however, should limit its scope to concentrate on some of the more viable options.
Kuan cited onshore and offshore wind power as worthy of further consideration.
In response to lawmakers' requests, Kuan said that the CEPD will provide a report on the effect of electricity price fluctuations on the nation's economy.
Kuan explained that the council has already conducted analyses on the effect that electricity price fluctuations have on commodity prices.
The minister added that the relation between electricity prices and the economy involves a wide array of complicated issues, and that he will ask his colleagues to look into to it and provide a report within three months.