New retail electricity market reforms deregulating electricity prices in Queensland have come into effect, increasing market competition and opening up the market to South-East Queensland users.
Queensland Minister for Energy Mark Bailey said the new reforms coincide with the release of the Australian Energy Market Commission’s third annual review of competition in retail electricity and gas markets in Queensland and other states and territories.
“The review found that competition continues to be effective in South East Queensland’s retail electricity market,” Mr Bailey said.
“As a result of retailers offering South East Queensland customers a greater range of contract options, customers are experiencing increased satisfaction, greater choice and competitive retail prices.
“The deregulation of South East Queensland’s market will further bolster competition, and electricity customers will soon have access to a wider range of innovative electricity products and deals.”
Mr Bailey said in the past electricity pricing was based on a one size fits all approach with customers unable to access benefits associated with their individual circumstances.
“Households will now be able to access products and packages which are more tailored to meet their individual needs and the way they use and consume energy,” Mr Bailey said.
Mr Bailey said mechanisms have also been put in place to ensure particularly vulnerable customers are protected in the deregulated electricity market.
“The Palaszczuk Government will roll out a consumer education campaign this month to ensure customers in South East Queensland have the knowledge they need to properly engage with the deregulated retail market,” Mr Bailey said.
“I will also direct the Queensland Competition Authority to monitor the market to ensure it remains competitive and produce an annual report so customers and stakeholders can track the progress of deregulation over time.
“We will also be monitoring to ensure vulnerable customers are benefiting from deregulation”.
Mr Bailey said regional Queensland would continue to be looked after with the continuation of subsidies.
“We’ve committed more than $560 million to subsidise regional Queensland electricity prices this financial year, to ensure that customers across regional Queensland pay a similar amount for their electricity to those in South East Queensland,” Mr Bailey said.