The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) has released its draft Consumer Vulnerability Strategy which sets out objectives, outcomes and actions items to address key challenges in the energy system for customers experiencing vulnerable circumstances. As one of Australia’s largest multi-service energy retailers, AGL welcomed the opportunity to share its experiences, insights and observations in response to the draft Strategy.
The seven proposed action items proposed by the AER which underpin the draft Strategy include:
- Developing a non-exhaustive list of indicators that energy businesses should consider and use to activate early conversations with consumers.
- Improved Retailer Report Cards.
- Considering the need for a payment difficulty framework for the National Energy Customer Framework.
- Encouraging improved engagement to promote disconnection truly as last resort, including reviewing the consumer debt threshold for disconnection.
- Introducing vulnerability impact assessments into aspects of the AER's work.
- Considering benefits to consumers experiencing vulnerability when assessing sandboxing or ring-fencing waivers.
- Working with the sector to review regulations and consumer protections to identify opportunities to promote consistency across jurisdictions and reduce cost to serve where possible.
You can read AGL’s full submission here.