AER publishes retail and network exemption guidelines consultation paper

The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) has published a consultation paper in relation to a review of the AER (Retail) Exempt Selling Guideline (the retail exemption guideline) and the Electricity Network Service Provider – Registration Exemption Guideline (the network exemption guideline).

The consultation paper seeks stakeholder feedback on:

  • Improving the clarity and readability of exemption requirements.
  • Streamlining the network exemption guideline and removing redundancies.
  • Clarifying concepts such as the issue of the ownership, control, and operation of embedded networks in the network exemption guideline.
  • Introducing standardised statements in both guidelines where information requirements need to be met, e.g. for exemption applications that require applicants to obtain explicit informed consent to network conversion proposals.
  • Improving consistency between the two guidelines.

We are now seeking submissions from interested stakeholders on the consultation paper by 30 June 2021.


The retail and network exemption frameworks apply to small private (embedded) network operators and incidental sellers of energy. Most of these sellers are energy onsellers operating in embedded networks. The AER administers the exemption frameworks under the National Energy Retail Law and the National Electricity Law respectively.

Section 118 of the National Energy Retail Law requires us to develop and maintain a retail exemptions guideline. We may amend the guideline in accordance with the retail consultation procedure set out in Rule 173 of the National Energy Retail Rules.

The National Electricity Rules require us to develop and issue guidelines for network exemptions in accordance with the Rules consultation procedures and in consultation with Registered Participants and relevant jurisdictional regulators.

Issued date: 
18 May 2021
AER reference: 
AC 66/21
General enquiries - Exemptions