The Australian Energy Council has stated that the energy sector can and should make improvements to customer outcomes in response to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Retail Electricity Pricing Inquiry (ACCC) report.

The ACCC report underlines the complexity of the market and the reality that there is no silver bullet, the energy council said.

The Australian Energy Council’s Chief Executive, Sarah McNamara, said, “There is no secret why energy prices are high. The ACCC acknowledges that previous approaches to the design of policy and regulation over a decade have pushed up prices for households and businesses.

“The energy industry acknowledges that consumers find the retail market confusing and that is why we have been working with regulators at both the state and federal level to make energy offers easier to understand.”

“There are changes the energy sector can make to improve customer outcomes.

“The energy industry has also been dealing with more than a decade of energy policy uncertainty that has had an adverse effect on much needed investment in the wholesale market. The National Energy Guarantee can deliver this critical investment in the energy sector.”

The Australian Energy Council has encouraged the government to consult on the detail of the ACCC recommendations to avoid any unintended consequences, especially on those recommendations that involve market interventions.

“Such proposals must not unintentionally undermine the commercial functioning of the wholesale market, which can put taxpayer funds at risk and deter future private investment,” Ms McNamara said.

“The ACCC report indicates there are no simple solutions but that more steps can be taken to improve confidence in the energy market.” 

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