Thursday April 17, 2014
Electricity bills are set to fall with less regulation and increased competition on the way for the retail electricity market.
On Tuesday, 15 April 2014, Minister for Resources and Energy, The Hon Anthony Roberts MP, visited St Marys to promote the NSW Government’s recent announcement to free up retail electricity prices, with the regulated power market coming to an end on 1 July 2014.
Minister Roberts and Tanya Davies MP, Member for Mulgoa, walked along Queen Street St Marys and approached local business owners and pedestrians, informing them that the NSW Government’s shift to a fully competitive electricity market, by removing retail price regulation, will put consumers in charge of their bills and make electricity retailers work harder to win their business.
“The NSW Government is committed to doing everything it can to reduce the cost of living pressures on families across NSW. This is going to be a big win for electricity consumers” said Minister Roberts.
From July 1, more than a million customers currently on a regulated price will see reductions on the face value of their bills of 1.5 per cent – but households can save up to an estimated $400 per year by taking advantage of the deals offered by electricity retailers to customers on competitive market contracts.
“For the first time in 15 years customers with regulated electricity prices will see a reduction in their electricity bill. Labor’s legacy of soaring electricity prices of up to 22.4% per year is now well and truly dead” said Tanya Davies.
The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) and the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) both published reports in 2013 noting the NSW electricity market is competitive and that regulation is unnecessary. The AEMC went onto to say regulation may be inhibiting price competition.
The AEMC also highlighted recent discounts offered by electricity retailers would save a consumer $300 to $400 per year, off an average household bill of $2,500.
On this information the NSW Government has taken action to remove electricity price regulation. Importantly, the removal of retail electricity price regulation will not change access to energy rebates, protection laws or the quality of customers’ electricity supply.
IPART will continue to play a role monitoring the NSW electricity market and analysing competition indicators, and will report back to the NSW Government for the next three years.
“I urge all households and small businesses to shop around for the best deal by making a free comparison on the Australian Energy Regulator’s website at www.energymadeeasy.gov.au,” Tanya Davies said.