ASIC’s report on regulatory technology

ASIC’s report on regulatory technology

AU Energy Compliance, Financial Services
The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) has published a report (Report 685) on ASIC’s Regtech initiatives during 2019-2020. We’ve spoken previously about the benefits of advanced software when it comes to regulatory compliance. Compliance processes are generally complex. They have many moving parts, and the amount of time and money required to enact processes can be high. Compliance management systems such as the Compliance HUB can simplify these processes and save a business both time and money. The ultimate aim of products such as the Compliance HUB is to embed compliance into decision-making. Compliance management software can simplify compliance processes by streamlining and simplifying tasks, eliminating redundancies, and improving efficiency. For example, automation can be used to automate the review and approval of large quantities of documents. This frees…
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Should Your Business Invest in a Compliance Management System?

Should Your Business Invest in a Compliance Management System?

AU Energy Compliance, Financial Services
Businesses around the world face challenges in managing regulatory compliance. Compliance requirements and the regulatory environment are constantly changing and there is no 'one-size-fits-all' solution. Companies are constantly faced with a balancing act between the risk of not complying with rules and the cost of having to comply with the rules. Companies are not the only ones that are affected by these challenges. They have a huge impact on the public sector and the general public. When it comes to investment in software, businesses typically start with a customer relationship management system and then sales and marketing software. Traditionally, compliance software is not considered a priority. Many businesses use excel spreadsheets to track their regulatory obligations. And yet, with the potential cost of non-compliance, is that an adequate approach? As…
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4 Months not prompt enough to fix customers’ meters

4 Months not prompt enough to fix customers’ meters

AU Energy Compliance
For the failure to promptly fix meters, the AER has issued eight infringement notices which led three AGL retailers to pay a total of 160,000 in penalties. Each infringement notice cost the AGL entities $20,000. The infringement notices were issued as the AER found that there were sufficient grounds to believe that there was a breach of clause 11.87.7(h) of the National Electricity Rules (NER). The provision requires that a ‘financially responsible Market Participant’ receiving a notice of a metering installation malfunction under clause 11.87.7(g)(3) must ‘promptly appoint a Metering Coordinator’. Note, Embedded Network Retailers are currently not considered ‘financially responsible Market Participants’. However, if the planned changes by the AEMC come into effect it is likely that the same rules apply to Embedded Network Retailers. The infringement notices offer…
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New NECF derogations for NSW Retailers

New NECF derogations for NSW Retailers

AU Energy Compliance
The passing of the NSW Government’s Electricity Infrastructure Investment Bill 2020 dominated headlines at the end of 2020. However, with much less pomp and ceremony, NSW also introduced further derogations to the National Energy Customer Framework (NECF).     Until October 2020, there existed (in the Electricity Supply Regulations) a prohibition on the remote disconnection of small customers in NSW. However, a combination of new regulations has ended this blanket prohibition while imposing additional compliance obligations on retailers operating in NSW. The new provisions can be found in the Gas and Electricity (Consumer Safety) Regulation 2018 and the Electricity Supply (General) Regulation 2014 and set out requirements for retailers and metering providers in respect of remote disconnection and reconnection of small customers. The key changes relevant to retailers are summarised below.…
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Spot the difference: Legal vs Compliance

Spot the difference: Legal vs Compliance

AU Energy Compliance, Building and Construction, Consumer, Financial Services, NZ Energy Compliance
Many large businesses have both in-house legal teams and compliance teams. What is the difference between the two and how do you know if you need a legal or a compliance professional? The role of an in-house legal team Of the two, the role of an in-house lawyer is probably more easily defined. Their role involves managing legal risk and providing legal services that support business growth. On a day-to-day basis, this includes reviewing contracts, interpreting the law, managing disputes and litigation, managing employment law matters, and providing legal advice on areas such as privacy law. In-house legal teams are staffed by qualified lawyers and are typically supported by external law firms engaged on panels. Having an in-house lawyer can be a very good investment for a business seeking to…
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Are You putting Your Business at Risk with inadequate Compliance Controls?

Are You putting Your Business at Risk with inadequate Compliance Controls?

AU Energy Compliance, Building and Construction, Consumer, Financial Services, NZ Energy Compliance
History is littered with spectacular compliance failures; from Eron to WorldCom and the shocking findings of Australia's recent Banking Royal Commission. And yet, we can expect more compliance failures to come. Which begs the two questions- why is that and what can be done about it? In reality, compliance is often seen as an afterthought by business leaders and founders. While founders want to grow innovative and successful businesses, the truth is that a founder’s first priority should be not just building a great company, but on building a great company that can last. Compliance is Critical to the Longevity of a Business While regulation and compliance don't exactly scream "sexy," they are crucial to the longevity of a business [for an interesting article on how to make compliance more…
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Upcoming Webinars on Energy Regulation

Upcoming Webinars on Energy Regulation

AU Energy Compliance
Compliance Quarter is an energy regulatory specialist firm. We run webinars relevant to energy businesses operating in Australia. You can join our webinar training sessions for free. Simply register using the links below. All of our webinars are recorded and available on-demand. Be sure to register to get access even if you can't make it on the day. 15 January 2021: Compliance obligations for customer facing staff: What are the key things to know when it comes to customer facing staff. Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_seWF1TpKRBKiLbp8Hvmjsw 22 January 2021: Life support obligations in more depth: Looking in more depth at the life support obligations in NECF and Victoria. Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_4RCz1mcrShCeR58gGXwUKA 4 February 2021: Managing regulatory obligations as risks: Examining the adequacy of your controls. Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_TPzL1IRDRvGrkFMRQrnXeA Do you have a…
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RRO triggered in NSW

RRO triggered in NSW

AU Energy Compliance
The AER has accepted a recommendation from AEMO and has made the T-3 reliability instrument triggering the Retailer Reliability Obligation (RRO). In making this decision the AER considered if AEMO’s reliability forecast contained any material errors in either calculation or input data, or inaccurate assumptions that materially impact the forecast reliability gap. The AER also considered if AEMO had used reasonable endeavours to prepare the reliability forecast in accordance with the AER’s Forecasting Best Practice Guidelines. No material errors or inaccurate assumptions were identified by the AER and as such it made the reliability instrument. The reliability instrument applies during weekdays from 1 January to 29 February 2024, for the trading periods between 3 PM and 8 PM AEST. What this means is that liable entities in NSW should consider…
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AER’s Statement of Expectations

AER’s Statement of Expectations

AU Energy Compliance
The AER has published its third statement of expectations of energy businesses during Covid 19. This statement of expectations applies from 1 November 2020 and will continue until 31 March 2021, and potentially beyond. In the new statement of expectations, the AER notes that the Covid 19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on the Australian community with many people affected by dramatic changes to their lives, businesses, income, and working arrangements. The AER notes that Covid 19 continues to influence energy use and the ability of customers to pay their bills. The AER suggests that retailers consider the methods of communication that they use when seeking to get in contact with a customer who is potentially experiencing financial difficulty. The AER recommends that retailers: listen to customers, who…
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Retailer Reconnection- Rule 121

Retailer Reconnection- Rule 121

AU Energy Compliance
Disconnection is a key area of risk for energy retailers. The process that must be followed by a retailer have been set out in other posts by Compliance Quarter. Today, we briefly look at the re-connection requirements. Retailers must comply with rule 121 of the National Energy Retail Rules. This is summarised below. Where a retailer has arranged for the de-energisation of a small customer'spremises and the customer has within 10 business days of the de-energisation: a. Rectified the matter that led to the de-energisation or madearrangements to the satisfaction of the retailer; b. made a request for re-energisation; and c. paid any charge for re-energisation; A retailer must arrange for re-connection of the customer by lodging a request with the distributor or arrange for the remote re-connection of the…
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