On 25 September 2015, the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) published a draft revised version of its Exempt Selling guideline for consultation and accompanying Notice of Draft Instrument. The AER is proposing to amend the guideline following a comprehensive review to bring alternative energy selling activities within the exempt selling framework, including proposing a new class exemption. We are also consulting on changes to regulating retrofitted embedded networks, requiring exempt sellers to claim government energy rebates and concessions for exempt customers and a number of other changes. We consider that our proposed amendments will make the guideline clearer and will better capture low risk energy selling activities, as well as reduce the regulatory burden for sellers without compromising customer protections.
The Retail Law requires anyone selling energy to customers to either hold a retailer authorisation or a valid exemption. While most sellers of energy will hold an authorisation, there will be some circumstances where an authorisation is not appropriate. This could include retirement villages, caravan parks or any other arrangement where an owner purchases energy from an authorised retailer and then 'onsells' the energy to tenants.
The consultation draft of the Exempt Selling guideline and Notice of draft instrument have been prepared in accordance with the retail consultation procedure set out in rule 173 of the National Energy Retail Rules.
Invitation for submissions
Interested parties are invited to make written submissions on the draft guideline by COB, 9 November 2015. Late submissions may not be taken into account. Submissions should be sent electronically to: AERExemption@aer.gov.au and should be in Microsoft Word or other text readable document form.
Alternatively, written submissions can also be sent to:
General Manager—Retail Markets
Australian Energy Regulator
GPO Box 520
Melbourne VIC 3001
Submissions provided by email do not need to be provided separately by mail.
Forum invitation - 20 October 2015
We would also like to invite you to attend a forum on Tuesday 20 October 2015 to discuss the proposed amendments. The forum is at 10am AEST and will be held via VCU in our Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Townsville offices. If you are interested in attending please register with us by email to AERExemptions@aer.gov.au, noting your organisation, the names of people attending and your location. Due to space limitations we ask that only two people attend from each organization.