A DOWNING Street summit with energy bosses yesterday offered little hope for hard-up Brits.
Lame duck PM Boris Johnson even said he would spare the firms further taxes if it were up to him.
A Downing Street summit with energy bosses yesterday offered little hope for hard-up Brits[/caption]
E.On chief executive Michael Lewis and Ofgem chief executive Jonathan Brearley arrive[/caption]
With bills now predicted to hit £5,000 next year, fat cats from companies like EDF, E.ON and British Gas owners Centrica met Mr Johnson, Chancellor Nadhim Zahawi and Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng.
Ministers are looking at ways to knock another £500 off bills as well as force energy producers to up production.
Boris told the meeting that hitting profits with a new windfall tax would be up to the next Chancellor — but added: “If it was up to me I wouldn’t go down that route”.
However bosses were warned that massive bills would ultimately ruin the industry if ordinary people cannot pay up.
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NO XMAS THIS YEAR FOR FAMILY
WIDOW Louise Parker blasted “obscene” energy fat cats pocketing huge bonuses while she works three jobs to pay her bills.
The mum-of-three has already told her kids there will be no Christmas this year after her bills more than doubled to £151 per month since her fixed rate deal ended in May. Her annual bills could be close to £5,000 by January.
The 48-year-old from Higham Ferrers, Northants said: “It’s obscene. I would never dream of taking money knowing my lifestyle is leaving loads on the poverty line.
“I’ve told the kids ‘no Christmas this year, you’ll get one small gift each’.”
Speaking afterwards, Mr Johnson said: “We know that this will be a difficult winter for people across the UK, which is why we are doing everything we can to support them and must continue to do so.
“Following our meeting today, we will keep urging the electricity sector to continue working on ways we can ease the cost of living pressures and to invest further and faster in British energy security.”
Mr Zahawi said they had agreed to work together to reduce costs: “In the spirit of national unity.”
But cabinet minister Mark Spencer, who backs Rishi Sunak for the next Tory leader, said there warned there would be a tax grab from them if the ex-Chancellor gets the keys to No10.
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Bosses of power companies were keen to call the round table meeting “constructive” but insiders later admitted the summit “just seemed to go around the houses”.
Another added that there was “lots of agreement on the need to find ways to support customers”.
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Tom Glover, UK head of German-based energy company RWE, said: “The meeting was very constructive.”
Also present was Jonathan Brearley, who receives a reported £300,000 in pay and perks to head regulator Ofgem, which sets the energy price cap.
FEARS FOR WINTER AS DEBTS HIT
MUM-of-four Victoria Beck is already in debt to her energy supplier and is dreading winter.
The 35-year-old is currently on maternity leave from her £30,000-a-year job in recruitment.
The family’s energy payments have more than doubled to £265 per month since January and her annual bills are set to hit £2,680.
Victoria, from Leeds, is £600 in debt to her supplier, but has already had to reduce her payments.
She said: “I already run around switching everything off at the socket. We’ve not felt the full impact yet, but in a couple of months it’s going to be a nightmare.”
Tom Glover, left, is the UK head of German-based energy company RWE[/caption]
Also present was Clare Harbord, Group Director of Corporate Affairs at Drax[/caption]