MPs clash over energy price freeze plans

Ofgem has warned consumers and businesses to prepare for higher energy prices.
Ofgem has warned consumers and businesses to prepare for higher energy prices.

Two North Kirklees MPs are at odds over how to help people cut their energy bills.

Batley and Spen MP Mike Wood (Lab) has dismissed the Tory-led coalition as being “in hock” to energy companies, branding many of them “sons of millionaires”.

But Dewsbury MP Simon Reevell (Con) said Labour’s plans for a price-freeze were unworkable and called for more to be done to improve the economy so people could afford their energy bills.

After Labour said it would freeze energy bills for 20 months should it win the next general election, the Tories announced plans to help cut family energy bills by an average of £50 per year.

But Mr Wood thinks the plans do not go far enough.

He said: “The government is in hock to the big six energy companies. Their plans work out at about an extra £1-a-week. For 99 per cent of people, it will make no difference.

“Many of the government are the sons of millionaires and they don’t know how most people live in places like Batley and Spen.”

But Dewsbury MP Simon Reevell said: “There is a limit on what the government can do when it comes to things like this.

“Ed Miliband can’t guarantee a price freeze, because wholesale energy prices will probably go up.

“We need to get more people to move to the smaller energy companies to put pressure on the big ones to keep their prices down, and also make sure the economy is doing well generally – then people can afford to pay their bills.

According to energy regulator Ofgem, the average profit made per household by the “big six” energy companies have risen to £105 per household.