This submission responds to the Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) Expenditure Forecast Assessment Guidelines Issues Paper. The development of the expenditure forecast assessment guidelines (the guidelines) is part of the AER’s Better Regulation process, which aims to implement changes to the National Electricity and Gas Rules that were published by the Australian Energy Market Commission in November 2012. The submission covers issues including the non-mandatory nature of the guidelines, expenditure assessment techniques, the expenditure assessment process, the importance of economic benchmarking, and economic incentive schemes. PIAC also expresses the hope in the submission that the new guidelines will form part of a package of regulatory tools that drive much needed reform of the energy network price regulation process throughout the National Energy Market (NEM).
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