You’d think they would have done the visit before they screwed their business over

Megan Woods has been to see Methanex, New Zealand’s single biggest user of gas, and a massive export earner for New Zealand. You’d have thought the minister would have bothered to go see Methanex before making a decision that will root their business in New Zealand. Quote:

Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods is off to Taranaki to meet Methanex, a major gas user potentially affected by the Government’s decision not to offer any new offshore exploration permits.

The Canadian-owned company converts gas to methanol and consumes about 46 percent of New Zealand’s gas.

The Government’s decision not offer any new offshore exploration permits in an annual tender process has raised questions about the future supply of gas but ministers have said existing permits still allow exploration.

Dr Woods told TVNZ’s?Q+A?programme on Sunday that she was visiting Methanex in Taranaki on Monday.

She said one of the things that Methanex was heavily dependent on was the extension of an existing gas permit in Taranaki next year.? ?

“So that will go through the normal process it would have a month ago. Nothing’s changed.”

TVNZ said the company needed to spend about $100 million in about five years’ time to refurbish its plants and it contributed $1 billion a year to the New Zealand economy.

Dr Woods said methanol was made in New Zealand “before we used gas. It was made using bio mass”.

“We also know that Iceland is making methanol using geothermal. So there are other options. And what a number of industry players are telling us is they want those long-term investment signals that they can decide.”

Dr Woods said the government had consulted with the industry before it announced the decision not to offer new offshore exploration permits. End quote.

Labour’s plans are to tell Methanex they will be forced to shut down. I know this because several journalists have been mouthing off about that being the best solution to preserve gas for BBQs and heating for the voters. They’ve drunk the Kool-Aid.?Watch journalists start talking about shutting down the Methanex plant (on the basis that is has been done before) and the aluminium smelter as well. Both of those companies are massive export earners. But, the government don’t care. They just want to virtue signal to meet Paris commitments, despite the fact that no other country is even going to bother. Yet again, politicians are sacrificing our economy, and all for a few headlines.

Methanex won’t spend that $100 million now. The $1 billion-a-year contribution to New Zealand will now wind down. Grant Robertson is going to have some mighty big holes in his budget in coming years.