Ofgem boss warns of high energy prices ahead of price cap announcement

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During a session with the House of Commons Energy Security and Net Zero Committee yesterday, Jonathan Brearley, Chief Executive Officer of Ofgem, addressed concerns surrounding energy prices and potential changes to standing charges in the energy sector.

Mr Brearley began by discussing the pressing issue of energy prices, stating, “What we are seeing is the markets have stabilised, prices have come down, and we are hopeful we will see positive news around the price cap on Friday.”

However, he highlighted that despite this stabilisation, prices remain significantly higher than they were before the crisis.

Looking ahead, Jonathan Brearley cautioned that prices are expected to remain high and volatile over time.

Turning to the topic of standing charges, Mr Brearley provided insights into Ofgem’s ongoing consultation on the matter, noting, “We had the standing charge call for input, which is out.”

The boss of Ofgem acknowledged the substantial public response to the consultation, with approximately 30,000 individuals contributing their views.

Jonathan Brearley expressed concerns about the potential impact of changes to standing charges, particularly on vulnerable consumers, stating, “If we were to make a change to the standing charge that has significant distributional consequences.”

Mr Brearly highlighted that such changes could leave around 1.2 million customers £100 worse off, especially those with low incomes and high energy usage.

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