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Kwasi Kwarteng and Ofgem CEO to face questions from BEIS Committee on energy market

19 May 2022

The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee questions the Secretary of State for BEIS, Kwasi Kwarteng, the CEO of regulator Ofgem, Jonathan Brearley, and his predecessor, Dermot Nolan.

Witnesses

Tuesday, 24 May 2022

At 11.15am

  • Dermot Nolan, former CEO of Ofgem 

At 12.00pm

  • Jonathan Brearley, CEO, Ofgem 
  • Simon Wilde, Director of Analysis and Assurance, Ofgem 
  • Neil Lawrence, Director of Retail, Ofgem 

At 1.00pm

  • Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng MP, Secretary of State, Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy 
  • Daniel Osgood, Director, Heat and Business Energy, Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy

In this last session of the inquiry, the Committee will raise questions about the regulatory failures that saw 29 energy providers go bust, resulting in a cost exposure to the taxpayer comparable with the 2008 financial crash. The Committee will ask how suppliers were allowed to enter the market without risking their own capital, be inadequately hedged, and gamble with customers’ money.

Ofgem will be questioned about risks facing the market as we come up to winter; proposals to update the price cap every three months; action it is taking to protect the most vulnerable and how it is ensuring suppliers are treating customers fairly. Questions will also be asked about its work to increase suppliers’ financial resilience, and what further powers it needs to effectively regulate the market and hold executives to account.

The Secretary of State will face questions on the BEIS Department’s relationship with Ofgem and whether it will be granting the regulator with any additional powers to ensure the market can be regulated effectively, as well as questions on the Special Administration of Bulb and how it will handle the potential for more companies to go under. There will also be questions about providing targeted support to customers and whether it plans to implement a social tariff, the potential for a windfall tax and the future of the price cap.

Further information

Image: Parliamentary copyright