More needs to be done on electricity charges


SNP MP Drew Hendry has welcomed the Competition  and Markets Authority (CMA) report on the electricity market – but stressed there is more to be done and that consumers should be more aware of their own power to lower their bills.

The report has proposed an overhaul of the domestic energy supply market by introducing caps on prepayment meters – the opening up of customer information to other suppliers to making a more competitive market and clearer, more transparent billing.

Mr Hendry the MP for Inverness , Nairn  Badenoch and Strathspey has been campaigning on fairness  in electricity charges and fuel costs  since the election –including  holding a debate in  Westminster Hall and demanding changes from both the UK government  and the energy companies.

Drew Hendry commented:

‘’This is as important step in the fight against fuel poverty –  as far as it goes . Helping customers on pre pay meters is good news – but the government needs to take on the power giants to get more transparency and fairness into bills.  The proposals in the report will potentially lower power bills for  low income homes across Scotland at a time when the UK government is still hell bent on austerity and cuts.

“There also has to be a real  effort to alert people to the measures they can take themselves as consumers to reduce their  electricity  costs directly. A false loyalty exists to the electricity suppliers – for example in the Highlands  and Islands  where up to  70 percent  of customers have never switched their electricity  provider. This despite the fact that  my campaign has highlighted the many consumers who have saved literally hundreds of pounds a year – simply by switching .

‘’We will continue to relentlessly  challenge the energy giants on fair tariffs and people power can also  have a huge effect if enough people start switching their suppliers – the this can also help reduce fuel poverty and stop people paying too much needlessly.

‘’These proposals also go some way to reforming the energy market and increase competition to help consumers save money . The CMA estimate that these proposals alone could lower household bills by a total of  £300 million – the equivalent of £90 per household – and that is great news for all those helped – but the fight against fuel poverty  must go on.’’