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Westminster denies energy prices plea

The UK government has denied asking energy firms to delay price hikes. Picture: Getty

The UK government has denied asking energy firms to delay price hikes. Picture: Getty

  • by JANE BRADLEY
 

THE UK government has denied that it asked energy companies to delay further price increases until 2015.

Reports yesterday claimed that sources at the Big Six firms had been approached by politicians and asked to agree to freeze costs.

However, Downing Street yesterday dismissed the claims as “utterly misleading”.

A Number 10 source added: “The government has not asked for a price freeze. People should wait for us to announce our plans.”

The government said it was instead focusing on boosting competition and reducing green levies to cut annual bills by about £50 and said detailed plans would be revealed in next week’s autumn statement by Chancellor George Osborne.

The denial came as the battle over how best to tackle the energy sector continued to rage.

Labour leader Ed Miliband has pledged to end the energy “rip-off” as he detailed proposals for reforming markets, but Prime Minister David Cameron continued to claim Labour’s plans – to freeze costs for 20 months if it gets into power at the next
election – were a “con”.

Mr Miliband branded the government’s plans “a shambles.”

 

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