The Labour leader announced the proposed freeze during today’s Labour Party conference in Manchester.
Ed Miliband announced today that he would freeze gas and electricity bills for every home and business in the UK for the first 20 months of a Labour government.
The Labour Leader believes the move would save average households £120 and businesses as much £1,800 but could also cost major energy companies as much as £4.5bn. Speaking at the Labour Party conference in Brighton, Mr Miliband said that energy companies had been overcharging for too long and that it was time to ‘reset’ the energy market.
“This is what I mean by a government that fights for you,” he said. “That’s what I mean when I say Britain can do better than this. The companies won’t like it because it will cost them more but they have been overcharging for too long. It’s time to hit the reset button.”
Indeed, the companies don’t like it at all, with several firms already warning that they could go bust by having to survive on ‘unsustainable, loss-making’ profits, leading to potential energy shortages in the future.
Energy UK, which represents British energy firms, warned that plans could impact on those working at all levels within the energy industry.
“Freezing the bill may be superficially attractive but it will also freeze the money to build and renew power stations, freeze the jobs and livelihoods of the 600,000 plus people dependent on the energy industry and make the prospect of energy shortages a reality,” the body warned.