Electricity retailers in Australia are no-more free to introduce price changes as a shock. The Australian Energy Market Commission announced a new rule under which electricity retailers are required to inform its customers at least five days prior to any upcoming change in power prices. But this good news will be taking the final shape next year as it has been told that the new rule will come into effect from February 2019.
Currently in Australia, Electricity and Gas retailers have no obligation to release the changes they are planning to introduce, beforehand. This has led to cast considerable impacts on consumers as their future bills used to come as a shock with additional charges, cited as revised power prices which were introduced by the provider months back.
But now it seems to be an end of such mild attacks. The prior information of future changes in electricity rates will provide flexibility to consumers, thereby allowing them to make a switch on their electricity provider. In a five-day interval, consumers can shop around, compare the prices offered by different retailers and then make a purchase depending upon the best quality, prices and services offered.
Any failure in adhering to the new rules outlined by the commission may lead to serious repercussions on power suppliers. The Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) has told that civil penalties such as infringement and fines would also be enforceable on the retailers if they fail to comply with the updated rule.
Angus Taylor, Federal Energy Minister said that the new rule is one of the government measures taken in the interest of the public to further bring down the cost of electricity.
The new rule comes after the Australians have faced a record high electricity rates. The prices surged so much earlier this year that it surpassed the historical high, setting new record. It was seen that in June 2018 quarter, electricity prices were 10% higher compared to previous corresponding year.
Head of the Energy Consumers Association, Rosemary Sinclair has been heard stating that Australia’s residential energy consumers have been struck by 30% rise in prices over the last two years. However, it has been forecasted by Australian Competition and Consumer Commission that power rates will now nosedive from its top level.
While this has been a big news for electricity players, it has also been noted that AGL Energy has been lately fined with about $3 million penalty in relation with energy efficiency failure.
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