Open Electricity Market gives consumers choice, flexibility

The Open Electricity Market has increased competition in the retail electricity market.
The Open Electricity Market has increased competition in the retail electricity market.PHOTO: ST FILE

Dr Jimmy Chih-Hsien Peng in his letter suggested that the Open Electricity Market (OEM) would lead to "a more expensive electricity bill" due to retailers inflating their profit margins and consumers being inactive in switching (Consumers should switch retailers when price plan goes sour, Feb 22).

The OEM has increased competition in the retail electricity market by allowing more consumers to buy electricity from a retailer of their choice.

Similar to other markets for consumer products and services, this increased competition is expected to lead to more attractive offers by electricity retailers.

Dr Peng's suggestion to cap retailers' profits could stifle market competition and innovation.

Instead, the Energy Market Authority has put in place safeguards to protect consumers. Households and small businesses can switch back to buying electricity from SP Group at the regulated tariff or switch to another retailer of their choice.

They should check with their existing retailers if applicable charges apply before making this decision.

In addition, retailers must safeguard all security deposits collected from households and return them to the consumers at the end of the contract.

Consumers who wish to switch to a retailer can use the Price Comparison Tool at compare.openelectricitymarket.sg to view and compare the standard price plans offered by different retailers.

They can sign up online through the retailer's website or at roadshows.

Consumers are advised to take their time to learn more about their options before deciding whether to switch as it is not compulsory to do so and there is no deadline for switching.

Dorcas Tan (Ms)

Director

Market Development and Surveillance Department

Energy Market Authority

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 04, 2019, with the headline 'Open Electricity Market gives consumers choice, flexibility'. Print Edition | Subscribe