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Ofgem plans simpler tariff proposals

Energy regulator Ofgem has reiterated its plans for “tough new standards of conduct” to ensure a “simpler, clearer and fairer” energy market, the BBC reported.

The plans, due to come into force in the summer, involve a cap on tariff options to make it easier for consumers to compare contracts and shop around. Energy suppliers will also have to offer customers their lowest variable rate tariff by default.

Prime Minister David Cameron said this would “put people before profits”. “Our aim is that consumers will get the best possible energy tariff - no tricks, no loopholes - and we will use the powers we gained in the Energy Bill earlier this month to make sure this happens,” he added.

Energy secretary Ed Davey said the reforms were “absolutely vital” to reduce the “bamboozling array of tariffs on offer.”

Ofgem’s reforms will make energy suppliers:

  • Offer no more than four core tariffs for each fuel type (gas and electricity)
  • Present clearer bills showing the cheapest tariffs
  • Treat consumers more fairly or risk Ofgem fines.

Ofgem chief executive Alistair Buchanan described the reforms as “the most radical shake-up of the energy bill market since competition began”.

If the energy companies do not co-operate with Ofgem’s proposals the government says it will force them to using the new legislation.

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