PIAC responded to the Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) discussion paper on electricity transmission ring-fencing. The purpose of ring-fencing is to prevent regulated businesses from discriminating in favour of their related parties to disadvantage competitors operating in these markets.
PIAC supports the provision of protections, and imposition of restrictions that are commensurate to the potential harm consumers may face from a product or service – the higher the potential harm, the stronger the protections and restrictions.
PIAC recommends that, while there the ring-fencing principles can be aligned between transmission and distribution ring-fencing guidelines, the way they are applied must be commensurate to the type and scale of potential consumer harms in each.
PIAC highlights the transformation of the National Energy Market leads to opportunities for new and emerging services. PIAC considers there are potential economies of scale and scope that can be exploited by allowing TNSPs to play a part in providing these services, and supports TNSPs being able to deliver these services where it is efficient and appropriate that they do so.