Energy Price Cap

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:36 pm on 3rd July 2017.

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Photo of Greg Clark Greg Clark The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy 3:36 pm, 3rd July 2017

I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for his questions. I hope he will see that I answered many of his points in my initial response to the urgent question. He will share my view—indeed, I think it is his view, too—that we should act as soon as possible to provide relief to consumers. That will require Ofgem to use its powers. It has powers that it can use immediately, and I have encouraged it to do so.

The hon. Gentleman mentioned my letter. I am sure that, as he was hoping to come into government, he studied the prospective use of the powers, so he will know that legislation requires me to ask Ofgem for advice. I did so under exactly those terms and Ofgem has responded by saying that it will work with consumer groups to identify how far the protection should go. I have been clear that I want the detriment of £1.4 billion a year to be eradicated. It is a test of Ofgem’s responsiveness that it should use its powers to that end. The constituents of Government and Opposition Members will look to the regulator to make use of its powers to prevent the continuation of such an unacceptable situation, which involves more than £1 billion a year.