Millions Being Ripped Off by Energy Bills, Says Committee of MPs
February 13, 2018
MPs in Westminster have said that millions of consumers throughout the UK are being ripped off by their energy suppliers and are paying higher prices for their gas and electricity than they should be.
Members of the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee have described Britain’s energy markets as being “broken” and made clear that price caps could soon be introduced to make the market function more fairly for consumers.
As many as 12 million people throughout the country are understood to be on energy tariffs that are effectively poor value and cost them money on an annual basis that they could otherwise be saving.
The BEIS committee picks out standard variable and default tariffs as offering particularly poor value to energy consumers and suggested that the UK’s leading gas and electricity companies are not doing enough to reduce the scale of overcharging that is currently in evidence.
With that in mind, the committee has said that the government will be justified in introducing caps on energy prices in order to create a fairer system for consumers.
The committee has said that many people are paying up to £300 more on an annual basis for their energy supplies than others who are on better value tariffs.
“The energy market is broken. Energy is an essential good and yet millions of customers are ripped off for staying loyal to their energy provider,” said Rachel Reeves MP, who is chair of the BEIS committee.
“An energy price cap is now necessary and the government must act urgently to ensure it is in place to protect customers next winter.
“The Big Six energy companies might whine and wail about the introduction of a price cap but they’ve been overcharging their customers on default and SVTs for years and their recent feeble efforts to move consumers off these tariffs has only served to highlight the need for this intervention.”
High energy bills often add to the financial difficulties being faced by people with problem debts in Scotland and across the UK.
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