ENERGY SECRETARY Greg Clark admitted yesterday that he has never switched energy suppliers in order to get a cheaper deal as it’s a “hassle.”
His comments came despite lecturing millions of cash-strapped customers to switch deals as the government had made it “quicker and easier” to do so.
The Conservatives have confirmed they will cap “ripoff” gas and electricity prices if they return to power following the general election.
Last year, the Competition and Markets Authority revealed that 70 per cent of people were on more expensive tariffs, costing £1.4 billion more than other deals.
Customers could save more than £300 by leaving costly standard variable tariffs, usually by moving to a fixed-term tariff, regulator Ofgem said.
The Conservative energy price cap, which Prime Minister Theresa May promised would save families up to £100 a year, would be set by Ofgem.
But when Labour pledged a freeze in 2013, under then leader Ed Miliband, it was dismissed as a “petty socialist campaign” by then prime minister David Cameron.
At the time, Mr Cameron also accused Mr Miliband of wanting to live in a “Marxist universe in which it is possible to control all these things.”
And former chancellor George Osborne also warned that energy companies would “jack up prices before the freeze so in the long term prices will go up.”
While visiting a factory in Leeds yesterday, Theresa May admitted that the plans will not stop prices from rising, when she was asked about it by a worker.
She answered: “I don’t think any government can ever promise that no bill is going to go up year on year.”
Shadow energy secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey branded the pledge “desperate stuff from the Tories,” and warned: “When the Tories say they’ll ‘cap’ bills, the question they need to answer is whether they can guarantee bills won’t go up for people next year — that’s the real test.
“A cap suggests a maximum amount that can be charged, not a promise that bills won’t go up year on year.
“The reality is that the Tories aren’t offering anything for working people. Their record is one of failure and broken promises, letting ordinary people down at every turn.
“Over and over they’ve promised to get bills down but under them households are almost £900 worse off due to increase energy bills since 2010.”
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn pledged last year that his party, which has yet to officially announce its energy policy, would provide energy “for the 60 million, not the big six.”
Tory attacks on Miliband
Michael Fallon ”We have not seen intervention in industry on a scale like this since the 1970s when they tried to control the price of bread.”
Boris Johnson “Miliband says he will imitate the catastrophic policies of the emperor Diocletian, by imposing a price freeze on energy bills for the 20 months succeeding the election.”