CEDA member profile: AEMO



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David Swift, Executive General Manager Corporate Development, AEMO

What does AEMO do?

The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) is an independent organisation working in the long-term interests of Australian energy consumers by developing markets that offer affordable, safe and reliable energy supplies. AEMO operates energy markets and systems and also delivers electricity and gas planning advice in eastern and south-eastern Australia.

What is your role in the company?

I am Executive General Manager, Corporate Development and responsible for developing policy responses to change, managing relationships with key stakeholders and positioning AEMO to be successful now and into the future.

What type of CEDA activities matter most to you and AEMO?

Many of the issues covered by CEDA events and research touch on issues of importance to our company or the markets in which we operate. A range of events and research have focused directly on energy but others looking at the broader economy and economic change can also be critical to our industry and to understanding our customers. It is always helpful to gain the perspectives of a range of people across all government and business sectors.

Why is your company a member of CEDA?

CEDA is a national organisation that engages people from a cross-section of the Australian business community. Many of our stakeholders are members, and CEDA events foster the type of discussions needed around the key issues of the day, including issues relating to the energy sector.

What are your company's top priorities for the coming year?

The energy landscape is constantly evolving in eastern and south-eastern Australia, with a decline in electricity demand contrasting with booming gas demand.

AEMO is looking at the impact of reduced electricity consumption on the National Electricity Market (NEM), which is presenting challenges for an industry and market with a long-term history of growth. We also see a growing focus on supporting innovation in retail markets to deliver greater choice in how consumers manage their energy use.

AEMO's forecasting role is becoming increasingly important as we respond to major changes in electricity and gas demand. In 2014 AEMO continues to enhance our forecasts and drill down to a more granular level in electricity forecasting and introduce new gas forecasts.

In March 2014, AEMO launches a new voluntary commodity market - a gas supply hub at Wallumbilla in Queensland. The market is the first of its type in Australia and arose from the standing Council on Energy and Resources (SCER) which requested AEMO develop this hub to enhance transparency and reliability of gas supply. This new market offers a low-cost, flexible method to buy and sell gas at interconnecting transmission pipelines.

AEMO continues to encourage and support the completion of energy market reforms to support the long-term interests of the energy industry and consumers