Consumer Action has supported the Clean Energy Council (CEC)’s application for re-authorisation of the Solar Retailer Code of Conduct (the Solar Code). Principally, we support the application to avoid a gap in protections between the expiry of the current Solar Code and the commencement of the New Energy Tech Consumer Code (NETCC).
Consumer Action intervened in the review of the ACCC’s authorisation of the NETCC before the Australian Competition Tribunal (ACT), and we confirm our view that the NETCC can improve on the Solar Code in two key ways:
– by prohibiting unsolicited offers of unregulated finance for the purchase of new energy technology (clause 3(d) – in November 2019 authorised version of the NETCC);
– by providing that signatories must only offer finance that is regulated by the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009 (Cth) (clause 24 – in April 2019 draft version of the NETCC).
Consumer Action considers these to be very important improvements that will produce strong public benefits. The consumer harm caused by unsolicited selling and unregulated finance is set out in our reports, Sunny Side Up and Knock it Off, and in our submissions both to the ACCC during the NETCC authorisation process and to the ACT.
Read our submission here (PDF) or below:200617 CEC Solar Code - submission to ACCC (1)