Government forces energy firms to offer lowest price

By Charles Maggs

The government will force energy companies to give customers the lowest price tariff available, David Cameron announced at prime minister's questions this afternoon.

Energy prices have defied the recent falls in inflation and rose by 13% since this time last year, when the government hosted a last-ditch 'energy summit' at Downing Street.

The policy is an extension on a proposal by forward by Ed Miliband, who suggested energy companies should be forced to offer their lowest tariffs to over 75s.

The plan will be welcome news for consumer groups. Which? chief executive Richard Lloyd said "energy prices are one of their [consumers] top financial concerns".

The so-called 'big six' energy companies have been accused of exploiting customers – profits at British Gas owner Centrica were up 23 per cent last year to £345 million.