On 2 March 2016, the Electricity Market Review (EMR) team published a paper outlining the proposed:
- selection criteria for future members of the new Rule Change Panel; and
- mitigation measures against potential conflicts of interest.
The selection criteria for individual panel members are based around knowledge and experience and include the following requirements:
- Broad knowledge and understanding of both the electricity and/or gas industries including supply, transmission, distribution and customers, and the market and regulatory structures in Australia generally and WA specifically.
- Understanding the potential issues arising in both the electricity and/or gas industries as they occur and the ability to address those issues with stakeholders in the WA electricity and gas industries.
- Tertiary qualifications and/or industry experience in engineering, economics, finance, law or a similar analytical field, or public policy and/or public administration.
- A successful professional career at a senior management level with specific experience (including commercial experience and change management) in one or more functions of the electricity or gas industries including supply, transmission, distribution, customer negotiation or regulation, preferably in Australia.
The paper also lists collective requirements for the Panel, such as ‘significant industry experience or understanding’ of metering technologies and/or emerging technologies in the electricity market, the regulatory frameworks of the electricity and gas industries and government and political processes in the energy industry.
To mitigate potential conflicts of interest for panel members the paper lists three measures, (i) application of an ‘independence test’ for potential members, (ii) requirements (under the governing regulations) in relation to the members’ responsibilities and duties and (iii) development of a ‘conflict of interest’ policy. The EMR Steering Committee also proposed restrictions on who can be appointed to the panel to include anyone in the WA Government who is involved in energy policy development, individuals employed by the Economic Regulation Authority and anyone directly involved with any Market Participants.
Respondents have until 18 March to make submissions on the proposals to the EMR team.