The work of the ERA is important to ensure that WA has a fair, competitive and efficient environment for consumers and businesses.
Regulatory bodies are designed for the specific needs of their role and the community they serve. An economic regulator is especially important in Western Australia because our state is isolated and we have a relatively small population spread over a large area. This means that for several essential services, real competition is not economically viable so the suppliers in these areas effectively operate as monopolies.
Without competition, even the best-intentioned and well-run monopolies need an independent but expert voice to ensure that customer needs are protected over the long term. This is our role. We aim to reduce compliance costs and promote efficiency which benefits all parts of our community in both the short and long term.
Why independent regulation?
Independence needs a clear separation between government policy setting and the roles performed by regulators such as the ERA. Independence reduces the risk of regulatory decisions being inappropriately influenced by vested interests helping to ensure that decision-making is in the long-term interests of Western Australian consumers.