MPs demand Ofgem crackdown on energy costs
An influential parliamentary committee has criticised energy watchdog Ofgem for failing to clamp down on industry costs.
The Commons energy and climate change committee warned that Ofgem had effectively left consumers on the hook for higher bills by failing to curb transmission and distribution costs. The panel said that caps recently introduced by Ofgem were too generous.
"Network costs are one of the main reasons dual fuel bills have risen in recent years. Ofgem must get its act together and scrutinise these near monopolies more effectively," said committee chairman Tim Yeo.
The committee expressed particular concern about the profits made by network companies, which Ofcom's regulatory framework - introduced a year ago with the aim of reducing costs - has so far done little to dent.
The findings came just a week after the Competition and Markets Authority found that customers who stayed with energy firms over the long term were effectively being punished for their loyalty, with new customers getting the best deals.