Response to the Essential Services Commission draft advice on the Victorian Default Offer methodology.
This submission has been prepared by the Victorian Council of Social Service, the Consumer Action Law Centre, the Financial and Consumer Rights Council and the Council on the Ageing Victoria, with assistance from other VCOSS members and Embiggen Economics.
We welcome consultation on the Essential Services Commission’s (ESC) draft advice to government on the proposed methodology for the Victorian Default Offer (VDO). The VDO is intended to be a fair default energy option for people who have difficulty engaging with the market (or do not want to engage), and provide a reference point for comparing lower or higher priced offers.
The ultimate test of the VDO lies in whether it delivers fair energy outcomes for Victorians, rather than enhanced ‘competition’ or a particular market design or structure. The ESC can monitor customer outcomes following the VDO’s introduction, including price levels and the prices paid by low income and vulnerable customers, transparency and predictability of energy prices, and ease of access to suitable energy offers.