This submission responds to the Australian Energy Market Commission’s (AEMC) draft report, Review of competition in retail electricity and Natural gas markets in NSW. In the submission, PIAC agrees with the AEMC’s finding that effective competition exists in the retail electricity market, but disagrees with the finding that competition is effective in the gas market. PIAC also took issue with the AEMC’s decision to classify gas customers as part of the dual fuel market, rather than the gas market. PIAC also argues that if electricity prices are deregulated, the NSW Government should put in place a comprehensive system to monitor the ongoing effectiveness of competition, and if necessary re-introduce price regulation. In addition PIAC recommends that if prices are deregulated, all retailers should be required to publish a standing offer on their websites on the same day every six months. Finally, PIAC recommends that any transition to price deregulation should be accompanied by a wide ranging and innovative consumer information campaign.
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