Richard Lloyd, Executive Director at Which? says Ofgem’s proposals for simpler energy tariffs do not go far enough. The Prime Minister’s promise for fairer energy bills will fail without more radical action to increase competition in the energy market
Ofgem’s proposals for simpler energy tariffs, backed by the Prime Minister, are a welcome step in the right direction.
But they do not go far enough to keep prices in check, at a time when spiralling energy bills are consumers’ top financial concern. Which? believes that the Government should take more radical action to provide not just simpler, but fairer tariffs.
There is a real danger that these proposals will fail to live up to the PM’s promise of fairer bills because of the lack of competition in this market. There is nothing in today’s proposals to stop customers simply being put on their current suppliers’ ‘best’ uncompetitive deal.
Prices will only be kept as low as possible if there is more effective competition and switching between energy companies. For this to happen prices have to be presented in a clear, consistent and simple way, through a single unit price, so people can readily identify the cheapest deal for them – not just with their current supplier but across the market.
Consumer trust in the energy industry has plummeted so the Government must act to give consumers the confidence that the price they’re paying for their energy is a fair one. If these proposals have failed to fix our broken energy market by 2015, the Government must step in and guarantee a fair price for all.