On 23 April 2018, the AER released version 5.0 of its Retail pricing information guidelines (the Guidelines) and accompanying Notice of final instrument. Version 5.0 of the Guidelines commences on 31 August 2018.
Under the National Energy Retail Law, the AER may develop and amend the Guidelines. The Guidelines are the main regulatory instrument that set out how retailers must provide information about their plans. The Guidelines also provide direction to energy retailers about providing data and information to the AER for the purposes of our energy price comparison website, Energy Made Easy.
The Guidelines play an important role in educating consumers and empowering them to engage in the retail energy market and make more informed and efficient decisions. By specifying the manner and form in which information is presented by retailers, we aim to create a clear and consistent form of presenting important information to customers, giving them confidence in the accuracy and comparability of this information.
We commenced a review of version 4.0 of the Guidelines in 2017 and consulted in accordance with the retail consultation procedure set out in r. 173 of the National Energy Retail Rules. Version 5.0 of the Guidelines introduces new requirements for retailers to present plan information simply and clearly through revised documents. Version 5.0 also improves consistency in how retailers present energy information to customers.
Consultation documents and submissions to the draft Guidelines informed the development of the final Guidelines.