2022-11-25 12:48:06

Energy sector reforms criticised by British Gas owner

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BBC

By Kevin Peachey

Cost of living correspondent

Energy regulator Ofgem has announced plans to make the sector more resilient to market shocks, but has been heavily criticised by British Gas.

The watchdog has dropped a plan to ring-fence customers' credit balances - which build up when direct debits are higher than energy used.

Instead, Ofgem said it would monitor closely firms' use of these balances.

British Gas owner Centrica accused Ofgem of an abdication of responsibility.

A raft of energy suppliers have collapsed since the start of last year after being unable to cope with soaring energy prices. The government is facing a bill of about 6.5bn for the collapse of supplier Bulb alone.

Ofgem is proposing a range of reforms including making sure companies have sufficient financial strength to deal with future energy shocks. It said it will also require suppliers to ring-fence money they need to buy renewable energy.

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