Energy suppliers to be forced to offer lowest tariff
Energy suppliers will be forced to offer customers the cheapest tariff they have, it was revealed today.
Energy watchdog Ofgem has pledged to make the system "simpler, fairer and more competitive" in a bid to end the confusion over complex tariffs which often put off customers switching their supplier.
The watchdog is also proposing to ban multi-tier tariffs to help users find the cheapest deals across the market.
Ian Marlee from Ofgem said they hoped to introduce some of the reforms by the middle of next year.
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Mr Marlee said there would be no more than four tariffs for both electricy and gas.
And Ofgem is considering proposing a scheme where suppliers offer vulnerable customers and those who have not switched for some time an estimate of the cheapest tariff across the market, including their rivals.
He also revealed the watchdog was proposing to force the energy giants to include personalised information on bills and statements, telling consumers if they were on the cheapest deal and how much they could save if they switched.
He said suppliers presented information in different ways and Ofgem wanted this simplified so customers "can compare like for like".
"We have the right to put in place licence conditions to make the market simpler," he said.
"We think this will improve competition in the market to keep the pressure on suppliers to keep prices low."