Regulation Impact Statement Updates

Official website for publishing regulatory impact analysis information for regulatory decisions announced by the Australian Government, COAG and COAG Councils.

Prohibiting energy market misconduct

Aust Gov
26th September 2019

Prohibiting energy market misconduct

On 18 September 2019, the Government reintroduced the Treasury Laws Amendment (Prohibiting Energy Market Misconduct) Bill 2019 to establish a legislative framework to address misconduct identified by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) Electricity Price Monitoring Inquiry.

The Bill was previously tabled in December 2018, and was accompanied by a Regulation Impact Statement (RIS) that had been assessed by the OBPR.

The current Bill (2019) contains amendments to the Bill (tabled in 2018) that clarify the operation of the Bill and improve the ability of companies and regulators to implement it.

The amendments include:

a. delaying commencement of the 'prohibited conduct' schedule of the Bill six months after Royal Assent;

b. amending the retail pricing prohibitionto clarify that:

i. It will apply only to market offers,and not default or standing offers(already subject to default market offer requirements), and

ii. retailers will not be required to pass on supply chain savings if it would breach another lay, regulation or rule;

c. limiting the details published with a contracting order to the name of the corporation and the date of the order;

d. removing the requirement for a 'no Treasurer Action' notice from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to be published;

e. ensuring a divestiture order against a governement entity only allows the asset to be sold to another authority of the same government which is in genuine competition with the first authority; and

f. limiting personal liability to senior staff.

The Office of Best Practice Regulation (OBPR) assessed the amendments in this Bill (2019) as minor and as such has not reassessed the RIS (attached below) which has been updated to reflect additional consultation undertaken and the amendments in the Bill (2019). Thus, as per the previous assessment, the RIS prepared by the Treasury is compliant with the Government’s requirements but not best practice.



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