Energy Minister wants fast action from the energy companies
This is the text of a letter which Energy Minister Fergus Ewing sent earlier this week to the Big Six energy companies demanding quicker action on prices. The big six are ScottishPower, SSE, E-on, EDF, RWE/Npower, Centrica and Energy UK.
The price of oil on world markets has moved substantially lower in recent weeks in response to changes in the pattern of global demand and production. The Scottish Government is working closely with the oil and gas sector to understand the implications of these changes for activity and employment in the North Sea.
Another aspect of falling oil prices is, of course, the consequent impact on energy prices more generally. Clearly, the wholesale price of energy, for both electricity and gas, is linked closely to the world price of oil and energy customers are therefore entitled to know when they can be expected to feel the benefit.
In the interests of transparency and fairness, I would be grateful to understand from you when and to what extent the lower oil price is likely to be reflected in lower energy bills for households and businesses in Scotland. I also seek your reassurance that any cost savings will be passed on to customers at the earliest opportunity and to the fullest extent possible.
I do not ask you to reveal any commercially sensitive information but I would be grateful for your high-level perspective as an industry leader on the expected scale and timing of oil price impacts on domestic and business energy bills.
I am writing in similar terms to the Chief Executives of the UK’s other leading energy suppliers and I look forward to your response.