In 2006, the Victorian Government mandated the
rollout of electricity smart maters to all households and small
businesses across Victoria under the Advanced Metering
Infrastructure (AMI) program.
The audit examined whether the deficiencies
identified in our 2009 audit have been addressed and whether the
Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport &
Resources (DEDJTR) can demonstrate that the AMI program is
delivering expected consumer benefits and is set up to maximise
The recommendations from VAGO's 2009 audit
have been substantially addressed, however, many of the costs and
benefits cannot be directly controlled by the state.
By the end of 2015, Victoria's electricity
consumers will have paid an estimated $2.239 billion for metering
services, including the rollout and connection of smart meters. In
contrast, while a few benefits have accrued to consumers, benefits
realisation is behind schedule and most benefits are yet to be
realised. Current estimates suggest that approximately 80 per cent
of the expected benefits could be achieved. There are significant
uncertainties and risks associated with achieving these benefits,
and consumers may experience a higher net cost than the most recent
$319 million estimate.
Given that consumers have been progressively
paying for the program since 2009 and ultimately pay the full
costs, DEDJTR must focus now on actions that will accelerate the
achievement of any benefits to consumers and avoid any further
increase in the net costs of the program.