Consumer Action welcomes the opportunity to comment on ACCC Retail Electricity Pricing Inquiry: Preliminary Report (Preliminary Report) for this inquiry. The ACCC has undertaken a welcome and extensive review of otherwise unavailable pricing information. This information confirms significant systemic issues in retail electricity pricing that we and other consumer advocates have repeatedly raised over a considerable period of time. We look forward to more detailed analysis in the final report.
The ACCC has clearly identified the issues that must be addressed—as did the recent Independent Review of the Electricity and Gas Markets in Victoria (Victorian Review). These include unnecessary complexity, excessive retail costs, and misleading discounts—amongst many others. However, we are disappointed that the ACCC, unlike the Victorian Review, has not indicated a direction of work that could generate the kinds of strong reforms needed to genuinely address those issues, and improve consumer outcomes.
171121 - Consumer Action submission in response to the ACCC retail electricity pricing inquiry preliminary report