Compliance & Enforcement

The AER Compliance & Enforcement Policy sets out the principles adopted by the AER to achieve compliance with the law and outlines our enforcement powers, functions and strategies.


The COVID-19 pandemic is having a significant impact on the Australian community and our stakeholders. The compliance and enforcement priorities 2019-20 have been retained for 2020-21 and refreshed in recognition of the COVID-19 environment.

Our priorities should be read with our Statement of Expectations of energy businesses; which sets out the ten principles we expect to be adhered to during this time, to the maximum extent possible.

We note the release of the Wholesale Electricity Market Performance Report in November this year may give rise to additional priorities.

Customer hardship
  1. Customers in financial difficulty are offered sustainable and affordable payment plans, timely access to retailer hardship programs. A focus will also be on ensuring customers are not wrongfully disconnected.
Life support
  1. Customers using life support equipment are protected.
  1. The provision of accurate and timely information:
    1. to AEMO which is critical to ensuring power system security and/or the efficient outcomes in or effective operation of wholesale energy markets; and
    2. to the AER which is critical to the performance of the AER’s economic or market monitoring functions.
Utility meter connected to a house
  1. Support the transition to metering contestability to ensure consumer and market benefits are delivered.
Gas reforms
  1. Increased market transparency through strengthened gas markets reporting requirements and ensuring access to pipeline capacity under the East Coast Gas Reforms.


The AER Compliance & Enforcement Policy explains our approach to promoting compliance with obligations under the National Electricity Law, National Gas Law, National Energy Retail Law and the respective Rules and Regulations. It also provides guidance on how we respond to potential breaches and the factors we may have regard to when deciding whether to take enforcement action.

It outlines how we ensure clarity, consistency and transparency in our approach to compliance and enforcement. It highlights the processes we utilise to maximise the impact and efficiency of our work and it guides the prioritisation of our compliance and enforcement activities.

This Policy should be read in conjunction with our compliance and enforcement priorities.