Ofgem backs energy code proposal

15 December 2005
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15 December 2005 | Rebecca Ellinor

Energy regulator Ofgem is backing a proposal to introduce a code of ethics for energy consultants.

However, neither Ofgem nor industry watchdog Energywatch, which proposed the code, will police it.

As SM reported last issue, Energywatch wants to end the current system where some agents receive commission from suppliers.

The idea has the support of CIPS and members of its energy committee have since met with Ofgem, Energywatch and others.

Martin Rawlings, managing director of Energytrak and a member of the CIPS energy committee, said: "The problem is that Ofgem and Energywatch don't want to run it."

Paul Savage, Energywatch business services manager, said: "While we will provide a focus for opinion on the code and will work with the industry to establish where it should sit, it must be self-regulatory. Third-party intermediaries must establish it and police their own best practice."

Ofgem holds the same view.

Dave Everett, an energy consultant and CIPS member, said he believed the code should also govern suppliers that sometimes use unscrupulous tactics to maintain business customers.

He said one such method was failing to alert customers to a notice period and including auto-renewal clauses in contracts to lock them in for longer.

SMdec2005

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