Tories set to back energy bills cap in manifesto - report
A cap on energy bills will be at the heart of a Conservative manifesto designed to cast the Tories as the party of the workers, it has been reported today.
The plan would empower Ofgem to put a maximum price, which could vary across different regions, on the standard variable tariffs that are used by seven out of ten households.
A Conservative source told the Sunday Times the move could save average households up to £100 per year.
“We will be introducing a cap on overly expensive and unfair standard energy tariffs to ensure ordinary working families are getting a fairer deal,” the source added.
“We are prepared to intervene when markets are not working for hardworking families.”
The Sunday Times also reports that the manifesto, set to be published on 8 May, will include proposals to boost workers’ rights.
Labour said the Conservatives “don’t stand for working people”, and that they have been “letting ordinary people down at every turn”.
Andrew Gwynne, the party’s campaigns and elections chair, responded: “The Tories' promises to deal with energy bills should be taken with a huge pinch of salt. Time and again they've promised action but when it comes to it they broke those promises. Under them energy bills have soared.
“At the last election when Labour promised action the Tories opposed it, putting themselves on the side of protecting the big energy companies' profits rather the interest of working people.
“Only Labour can be trusted to deliver a country for the many rather than just the few. All the Tories offer is broken promises and a record which has seen working people worse off.”
Ed Miliband was repeatedly derided by Conservatives when he proposed freezing energy bills during his leadership of the Labour party.
The manifesto speculation comes after the Tories were put under pressure to spell out their plans for taxes after the election.
Mrs May repeatedly refused to rule out increasing VAT, National Insurance or income tax – but insisted the country faced a choice of “lower taxes under the Conservatives or higher taxes under Labour”.