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United Kingdom to cap energy prices from next winter

United Kingdom to cap energy prices from next winter

The price cap for vulnerable households is separate to plans for a wider cap on all standard variable tariffs, which was announced by the Prime Minister Theresa May last week.

Last week Business Secretary Greg Clark said a gas and electricity price cap could be imposed as early as this winter should Ofgem decide to use its powers.

The legislation is unlikely to come into force for at least a year, meaning that customers face another winter with high energy bills.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy states that more than 18 million households in Great Britain are now on a standard variable tariff or other default tariff.

Draft legislation created to lower the cost of energy bills is set to be published by the government later.

The legislative process could take as long as a year, and then a further five months for Ofgem to implement a cap.

A United Kingdom government plan to cap the most common form of gas and electricity tariffs for millions of households in the country would not come into effect in time for this winter, energy regulator Ofgem said yesterday.

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"An absolute cap would throttle competition, be out of date as soon as the wholesale price of gas goes up or down, and energy firms would spend more time lunching their regulators than delighting their customers".

More than 18 million customers are now on standard variable tariffs or other default tariffs - many of which see them paying more despite their loyalty.

To help with this, Ofgem is introducing new rules today to allow suppliers to roll customers coming to the end of their contracts onto another fixed deal instead of a poor value standard variable tariff.

The Government's plan to provide price protection to all households on default deals will reassure them that the price they pay reflects the underlying costs of supplying their energy.

Around two-thirds of all energy customers in the United Kingdom are now on these variable tariffs.

The government will announce further details of the proposals today.

The cap would be a temporary measure, running until the end of 2020 at the latest.


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