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The Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) has admitted that competition among energy retailers is not delivering ‘expected benefits’ in its annual retail energy competition review. Consumer Action Law Centre and PIAC’s Energy and Water Consumers’ Advocacy Program (EWCAP) are calling for stronger action by energy retailers and regulators to ensure that the market is working…

Read More Consumer advocate groups call for action by energy retailers and regulators

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NBN Co has recently announced changes to wholesale prices charged to retail service providers (RSPs) from October 2018. These changes mean consumers can expect to pay higher prices to access NBN services. At the same time consumers can expect to have an improved experience as congestion in the network is addressed through greater dedication of…

Read More ACCAN’s Analysis of NBN Co’s recently announced Pricing Changes

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As consumers, we want a digital world that we can trust. The recently published ISO 20488 standard on Online consumer reviews – Principles and requirements for their collection, moderation and publication is a great tool to give consumers more elements to enhance our trust. Consumers International was represented by Julie Hunter at the ISO Technical Committee on Online…

Read More Putting the trust back into online reviews

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Telco consumers can expect a better complaints-handling experience under a new industry standard and record-keeping rules announced today by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA). This is the first tranche of new rules announced by the ACMA in December 2017 to improve consumers’ experience in migrating to the National Broadband Network (NBN). The ACMA’s actions follow its industry information-gathering exercise and its…

Read More ACMA rules kick in on telco complaints

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The Queensland Consumers Association is supporting the introduction of national rules for gift cards following the rules introduced recently in NSW. In its submission on a federal government discussion paper on options for national rules, the Association supports a minimum 3 year expiry period for gift cards but also wants other changes. Association spokesperson Ian…

Read More Consumers support National rules for gift cards

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ASIC is warning consumers about companies that claim they can fix a poor credit rating. ASIC is running a month-long campaign, with other Commonwealth, state and territory agencies, to help consumers understand that by using credit repair and debt management firms they may end up paying high fees. Consumers should be aware these companies often…

Read More ASIC warns consumers about paying high fees for credit repair and debt advice services

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The second ever G20 Summit on Consumer Protection was held in Argentina in May 2018.  At the invitation of the co hosts, the Argentinian Directorate for Consumer Protection and Consumers International, Professor Gail Pearson represented Australia and spoke on Food Waste and consumer awareness and education. The program focused on the digital economy and protection…

Read More G20 Consumer Summit 2018

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With China no longer willing to accept material from Australia for potential recycling, there is a national discussion about what can and cannot truthfully be labelled as “recyclable” going forward in Australia. Standards Australia has played a lead role in the development of standards on environmental labelling as the Secretariat of the ISO TC 207 SC 3 Environmental…

Read More What can truthfully be labelled recyclable?

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Dr Martin Gill reviews a solar installers analysis suggesting a strata complex would recover the cost of investing in a solar system in “just over 4 years” – Dr Gill’s review of the installer’s analysis raises multiped issues, read more here. The Clean Energy Council maintains a list of Approved solar installers. These installers voluntarily agree to a…

Read More Validating a solar quote

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The Consumers’ Federation of Australia has recently developed a set of good practice principles to offer guidance to industry bodies and EDR schemes about good practice in ensuring effective consumer input, including good practice in involving the consumer sector. The principles also set out consumer sector expectations for review processes. Read the document in full here.

Read More Guidelines for development and review of industry codes & EDR schemes

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The following is a media release from Senator the Hon Zed Seselja, Assistant Minister for Science, Jobs and Innovation. Australians are being asked for their views on how to modernise the national measurement system as part of the Australian Government’s measurement law review. The Australian Government has marked World Metrology Day with the release of a…

Read More Public consultation commences on Australia’s measurement laws