Minister for Industry, Resources and Energy, Anthony Roberts, has welcomed the passing of legislation yesterday, which locked into place the deregulation of retail electricity and gas pricing, ensuring downward pressure on energy prices.
The Energy Legislation Amendment (Electricity and Gas Pricing) Bill 2015 provides certainty for customers and the market by enshrining the Government’s reforms around electricity price deregulation. It also updates current safeguards for electricity and gas customers.
“We’ve already seen that the deregulation of the retail electricity market has put downward pressure on prices. This legislation now cements those benefits to NSW households and businesses,” Mr Roberts said.
“Since we deregulated the retail electricity market on 1 July 2014, more than 418,000 customers have switched to a better deal, leaving fewer than 21 per cent of customers on the former regulated tariff.
“Deregulation forces greater competition and allows a customer greater freedom of choice to change their retailer if they are unhappy with prices or the level of service.
“Under this legislation, the Government will consider deregulating retail gas pricing from 1 July 2017, on the condition that there is a considerable increase in the level of competitive offers available to customers in regional NSW”.
St Vincent de Paul’s New South Wales Energy Prices July 2015 report found ‘customers switching from the worst electricity standing offer to the best market offer can save up to $550 to $1,050 per annum’.
About 20 per cent of the State’s 3.3 million electricity customers remain on the transitional tariff that replaced the former regulated price, 20 retail brands are active in NSW with four new retailers having entered the NSW electricity market since July 2014.
For a free and independent price comparison of retail electricity offers in your area visit the independent Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) website: www.energymadeeasy.gov.au