Domestic Gas and Electricity (Tariff Cap) Bill - Report

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:34 pm on 27th June 2018.

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Photo of Lord Stevenson of Balmacara Lord Stevenson of Balmacara Opposition Whip (Lords) 4:34 pm, 27th June 2018

My Lords, I will briefly address the substantive motion and explain why we are not moving Amendment 4. It is not from any wish to exculpate us from the needs that should apply to bodies which represent consumers in relation to appeals; it is simply that, given the news that the noble and learned Lord wishes to withdraw his amendment, there seems little point in moving an amendment that will have to be withdrawn in turn.

I congratulate the noble and learned Lord again on introducing his amendment with considerable skill and clarity. He made his case comprehensively. Like him, I am completely bemused by the Government’s response to this, which seems to be more to do with protecting Ofgem than with the merits of the case he made. We are in a situation where the only appeal that will be available in this area is JR. We understand the defects in that and we think that it is probably wrong, not just because of the case that was well made by the noble and learned Lord but because it is an open invitation to seeing a greater amount of judge-made law rather than statutory law, which is a wrong thing. Nevertheless, we respect the decisions being taken by the movers of the amendment, and look forward to hearing a response from the Government.