ACCC to monitor and report on electricity prices

The Federal Government has directed the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to monitor and report on prices, profits and margins in the supply of electricity in the National Electricity Market.

The first report is due to government by 31 March 2019, with reporting to continue at least every six months until 2025.

The formal Government direction enables the ACCC to use its information gathering powers, meaning electricity providers are legally required to provide the ACCC with information relating to the inquiry.

Under the direction the ACCC may also make recommendations to Government on how to improve outcomes for electricity customers.

“This new role will monitor whether the electricity market is working in the interests of electricity customers. The ACCC will gather information and report on electricity prices, profits and margins from a wide range of energy companies,” said ACCC Chair Rod Sims.

“We will particularly assess whether policy changes, including those flowing from the ACCC’s July electricity report, are delivering benefits for customers.”

“We are looking forward to continuing our role in providing advice regarding electricity affordability and bringing greater transparency around prices, and believe we are well placed to carry out this important role.”

The Terms of Reference are available here: Electricity Market Monitoring

Background

In 2017, the ACCC was directed by the Treasurer to commence the Retail Electricity Pricing Inquiry. In July 2018, the ACCC published its final report from the Inquiry, which made 56 recommendations to address electricity affordability issues.

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