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Energy firms breaking competition law highlights ‘clear need’ for stronger licensing rules, says Citizens Advice

30 May 2019

Citizens Advice, in its role as the official consumer champion for energy, has responded to Ofgem’s announcement that E Gas and Electricity, Economy Energy and Dyball Associates breached competition law.

Gillian Guy, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice, said:

“We’ve known for some time that suppliers who were unprepared and unsustainable were able to get into the energy supply market. Today’s action by the regulator shows firms that were willing to break the law were also able to get in.

“It’s especially troubling that the people affected were most likely pre-payment meter customers, who are more likely to be vulnerable or on low incomes and less likely to switch.

“Ofgem has taken steps to tighten the rules around who can get into the market, including a fit and proper person test. But this case shows a clear need for stronger rules on supplier conduct  and close scrutiny of the management of firms.”

Notes to editors

  1. Citizens Advice includes the national charity; the network of independent local Citizens Advice charities across England and Wales; the Citizens Advice consumer service; and the Witness Service.
  2. Citizens Advice is the statutory consumer advocate for energy and post. We provide supplier performance information to consumers and policy analysis to decision makers.
  3. The Citizens Advice Witness Service provides free, independent support for prosecution and defence witnesses in every criminal court in England and Wales.
  4. Citizens Advice offers Pension Wise services at 500 locations in England and Wales.
  5. Citizens Advice’s services are free, independent, confidential and impartial, and available to all regardless of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion, age or nationality.
  6. To get advice online or find your local Citizens Advice, visit
  7. For consumer advice, call the Citizens Advice consumer service on 03454 04 05 06 or 03454 04 05 05 to talk in Welsh.
  8. We helped 2.6 million people face to face, by phone, email and webchat in 2017-18. For service statistics see our monthly publication Advice trends.
  9. Citizens Advice staff are supported by over 23,000 trained volunteers, working at over 2,500 locations in England and Wales.