Citizens Advice has responded to British Gas announcing that it will raise the price of its annual dual fuel standard variable tariff by 7.3%, with electricity bills rising by 12.5%, from 15 September.
Chief Executive of Citizens Advice Gillian Guy said:
“Customers of all large energy firms have now seen their bills rise this year so it is clear that something needs to change.
“British Gas has in recent years been offering one of the less expensive standard variable tariffs from a larger firm, but today’s price rise will close this gap and hit long standing customers hardest. This price rise has been issued despite costs for energy firms dropping in recent months.
“It is positive that British Gas has chosen to credit 200,000 of its most vulnerable customers with £76 to offset its price rise this winter - but this underlines the need for long-term solution to protect loyal customers of all firms.
“Capping energy bills for those eligible for the Warm Home Discount would protect the poorest families and pensioners across the board - which is why Ofgem’s proposed safeguard tariff is the right approach. We want this to be matched by the introduction of yearly targets for suppliers to move their customers off the more expensive standard variable tariff - and a deadline after which anyone who hasn’t switched for 3 years would also have their bills capped.”
Centrica plc increases the price of electricity on the British Gas standard