The Federal Government’s announcement that it will abolish a key mechanism for ensuring that judgments made by regulators are held up to independent scrutiny is a grave concern, the Australian Pipelines and Gas Association said today.
Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull yesterday announced that his government would abolish the limited merits review which is the mechanism that enables judgments made by regulators to be examined by the Australian Competition Tribunal.
“We are deeply concerned that, after years of significant efforts at cooperation among the States and Territories on energy matters through the CoAG Energy Council and its predecessors, we are increasingly seeing jurisdictions making unilateral decisions,” APGA Chief Executive Peter Greenwood said.
“The limited merits review exists to provide appropriate monitoring of regulatory decisions and to correct any errors when it is in the public interest to do so.
“The limited merits review is enshrined in the National Gas Law and the National Electricity Law and these pieces of legislation have been carefully developed by Federal, State and Territory ministers working together through the CoAG system.
“The Commonwealth will now overturn that cooperation by removing the power of the Australian Competition Tribunal to conduct the limited merits review, and this adds a new element of uncertainty into energy markets.”
Read more in the Unilateral action increases uncertainty in energy markets media release.