Should energy prices be capped?

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  • Draft legislation designed to lower the cost of energy bills has been published by the government.

    The Draft Domestic Gas and Electricity (Tariffs Cap) Bill will give energy regulator Ofgem the power to cap standard variable tariffs.

    Not sure what I think about energy price caps or this specific legislation.

    Supposedly, the supply of energy was privatised, but the energy companies still receive state subsidies. Then there's the matter that many of these companies are owned by foreign state owned companies. Mix into the pie the issue of competition, or lack of. Yes, you can be billed by a whole range of different companies, but you only have one electricity wire going into your home and the company that sends the electricity down that wire is a localised monopoly, plus the national grid is another monopoly.

    Rather than price caps, wouldn't a proper privatised system be the better option?

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  • I would be in favour of a much simpler pricing regime: One tarriff for electricity, one for gas and one for duel fuel. No special deals etc. Then let them compete for the cheapest to supply. Perhaps the only concession from that would be a loyalty bonus for those who chose not to switch.

    The current system is insanely complex, rewards disloyalty and punishes those who chose not to or are unable to switch.

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  • They make it complex so it makes it harder to compares one deal to another, same thing with broadband packages too.

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  • When you consider that the gas and electric all come down the same pipe or cable and essentially from the same supply the differences the different companies charge just doesn't add up.

    I am of the opinion that if consumers were to put pressure on their existing supplier rather than just follow the advice of so called comparison and money saving experts they could probably get a better deal, don't forget the price comparison sites are paid by the companies to promote certain deals in favour of others.

    I also suspect there is a certain amount of who is the flavour of the month/season deals going on between suppliers.

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