Think tank The Australia Institute has claimed that their research shows Gladstone’s manufacturers will pay up to $3 billion more for gas over the next decade once three terminals on Curtis Island start exporting LNG.
The ABC reports that the group’s research shows local prices will rise to $15 per gigajoule compared to a current $5 per gigajoule as prices become linked to those in gas-poor Asian countries.
"It's simple supply and demand – if you are able to sell to one customer for $15 and that customer is prepared to buy it, then you're not going to sell it to somebody else for $4,” spokesperson for the Institute, Mark Ogge, told the ABC.
"The Asian market price for gas is about $15 a gigajoule and in Australia we're paying about $4 or $5 a gigajoule.
"So the gas companies will sell it to overseas Asian customers and domestic consumers will have to match that price in order to be able to buy the gas, so our gas prices will go up a huge amount."
The self-described progressive organisation has blamed poor planning at the state and federal government level for the situation.
"It's a failure of economic management, approving so many massive projects to be built simultaneously,” Ogge told the Gladstone Observer.
The Australian Petroleum Production and Export Association, which is a critic of any suggestions that international sales of Australian gas be restricted, has said that the exports are a positive for the economy.
"The Australian economy benefits when producers export goods and services at world prices," said its directer Michael Bradley.