The Commission has decided not to make a draft rule in relation to the multiple trading relationships (MTR) rule change request.
MTR refers to an arrangement where a customer engages with more one retailer at a premises. Customers can already do so under the existing National Electricity Rules, by establishing a second connection point. The rule change request proposed a new framework that was designed to reduce costs for customers who want to establish MTR arrangements.
The rule change request follows earlier work by the AEMC to develop a new framework to better enable customers to engage with multiple retailers, as part of the Power of Choice review. However, since the AEMC’s initial work was completed, other Power of Choice reforms have been progressed that provide similar benefits and reduce the need for this new framework.
The Commission’s analysis also found that, if implemented, the rule change request would benefit only a small number of customers who wanted to set up MTR arrangements. However, it was also likely to require retailers and distributors to make extensive changes to IT systems and other processes. The costs of doing so could increase retail electricity prices for all customers, not just those who wanted to establish MTR arrangements.
In addition, the proposal could increase the complexity faced by customers in electricity retail markets, which may make it harder for customers to engage effectively in the market. It may also create risks for vulnerable customers.
Submissions to the draft determination are due by 14 January 2016.