7 June 2018

Origin Energy freezes electricity prices in ACT

| Glynis Quinlan
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Origin Energy will freeze electricity prices in the ACT from July 1.

Major energy provider Origin Energy has announced it will freeze its electricity prices in the ACT in order to deliver modest relief from rising prices from July 1.

The energy company will also freeze electricity prices in NSW and will lower its prices in Queensland and South Australia.

Origin Executive General Manager Retail, Jon Briskin, said it will be the first time since 2015 that there will be no increase to mid-year retail electricity prices, with Origin deciding to absorb expected price rises in the ACT and NSW.

“Our prices reflect a more stable National Electricity Market overall,” Mr Briskin said.

“We’ve also absorbed higher green scheme and network costs in NSW and ACT turning what would have been another increase into a freeze on our base tariffs in those states.”

Mr Briskin said the decision will benefit customers hard-hit by past energy price hikes.

“Customers have felt the pinch of higher electricity prices and while this is a modest turnaround, we are glad to be delivering better news this year,” Mr Briskin said.

Origin Energy is one of Canberra’s three main electricity providers, along with ActewAGL and Energy Australia.

Origin Energy is the first retailer to announce its new prices to take effect from July 1 this year.

Origin Energy said its announcement applies to its base tariffs and there could be further savings available for customers if they sign up to competitive market offers.

“We believe we can drive electricity prices even lower for Australian households and businesses if we can agree on a long-term energy policy to encourage timely investment in new supply to replace the nation’s ageing power stations,” Mr Briskin said.

“We encourage the industry and governments at all levels to stay the course and continue to progress the National Energy Guarantee.”

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The article linked to is about the ‘regulated standing offers’ – i.e. the offer that must be provided by ActewAGL Retail. and is regulated by the ICRC.

All other offers, such as those provided by ActewAGL (when they offer significant discounts), Origin Energy and other providers, are ‘market offers’. What in essence this means is that the resulted standing offer sets a maximum price in the market, and the retailers will fight below this for market share. Hence Origin has made the decision to freeze prices for 2018-19.

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