A price re-regulation proposal in Victoria will slash energy bills, but not everyone’s happy

By Ceyda Erem ·

The Victorian Government may soon be using force to re-regulate power prices in an effort to ease the bill burden on Aussie households but energy retailers are fighting back. 

The move is set to save Aussies more than $200 a year on their energy bill but energy retailers are arguing that small businesses and the investment in renewable energy will suffer.

"Re-regulation of any market is bad for investors. Once you have a regulated price the likelihood of new entrants into the market falls. Second, the smaller retailers are likely to drop out of the market because the nature of a regulated market means it’ harder for these players to survive. And third, in a regulated environment, players large and small are less likely to invest in innovation,” Chief Executive of renewable energy generator Meridian Energy Australia and small retailer Powershop, Ed McManus explained.

"There is no doubt the market could be working better for consumers, and changes should be made so consumers can compare electricity prices,” McManus said.

Despite the lack of welcome, multiple sources in the energy industry have confirmed the go-ahead from Environment and Energy Minister, Lily D'Ambrosio, with one senior executive calling it a “done deal”.

RELATED: Victorians to save on energy if they sweat it out this summer

The dubbed “Basic Service Offer” is one of the 11 recommendations in a review made by former deputy executive, John Thwaites.

It aims to replace pricier “standing offer” contracts and will ask energy retailers to provide customers with a “no-frills” and reasonably priced electricity deal.

Standing offer contracts are used when a customer has never changed their electricity retailer - less than 15% of Aussies in Victoria are currently on ‘standing offer’ contracts.

The proposal for the re-regulation will be going to the state cabinet in a matter of weeks.

While the re-regulation proposal is designed to save Aussies some extra cash with energy bills, Aussies should still review their plan every year to make sure that they’re still getting the best deal on their electricity, as Mozo’s data found Aussies could be saving over $1,000 a year by switching. You can also manage your bills by making daily efforts to cut down on energy usage.  

Simple ways to cut down your energy usage:

Go natural as much as possible - With the weather heating up and the spring breeze peeking through, now is the perfect time to embrace natural light and ventilation. Try not to reach for the light switch during the day and cool your home by leaving the windows open.

Check-in on your aircon - Treat your aircon to a good clean and replace the air filters to keep it at its most efficient. A poorly maintained aircon can significantly impact your energy bill.

Out with the old, in with the new - Before you start cracking open a cold one by stuffing your fridge with your favourite drinks, clear out unwanted food items first that are soaking up and wasting your fridge’s energy. While you’re at it, check that the condenser coils are clean and that dust is not damaging the motor’s efficiency.

Let the cold showers begin - When the weather allows it, have a cold shower to not only improve your health and wellbeing but lower your energy bill.

Thinking of switching to save on your energy bill? You’ll need our energy comparison tool.

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Ceyda Erem
Ceyda Erem
Money writer

Ceyda Erem is Mozo’s authority on Energy, as well as having broader expertise as a personal finance writer. She loves to put her researching and writing talents into stories that help our readers to make more informed financial choices, whether that’s about finding the best energy deal or writing about the latest sneaky bank tricks. Ceyda has a Bachelor of Arts (major in writing) from Macquarie University.