Energy bill plans won’t stop tariffs increasing – Pakes

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PLANS to simplify energy tariffs could backfire and lead to higher bills, according to a senior Labour politician.

Andrew Pakes, who is the party’s parliamentary spokesman in Milton Keynes, was speaking out after the Government announced proposals aimed at giving customers the lowest tariffs for enrgy bills.

The plans, revealed on Tuesday, would mean households no longer face hundreds of tariffs, with energy companies limited to four tariffs per fuel; energy companies will have to make bills simpler for customers to understand; and households will be moved onto the cheapest tariff under their supplier that suits them.

They were immediately backed by Milton Keynes MPs Iain Stewart and Mark Lancaster, both Conservatives.

Mr Pakes said the Government’s plans do nothing to tackle raising energy prices.

His comments were backed up by watchog, Consumer Focus, which has warned consumers could lose out if the big companies level up prices.

Labour is calling for Ofgem to be given stronger powers to prevent unnecessary price rises.

Mr Pakes said: “The big energy companies have become a law unto themselves in recent years with higher bills and confusing tariffs. While simplifying tariffs is welcome it is only one part of the problem.

“The Government has said nothing about how it will stop energy companies simply putting prices up yet again. We need real reform to tackle rising prices and to help kept energy bills down.”