Ofgem investigates Utility Warehouse over treatment of customers in debt

The regulator will look into whether the energy supplier has appropriate repayment options in place

Ofgem confirms £150 cap for prepayment meter charges

Ofgem has confirmed a £150 cap for customers in debt who are forced to have prepayment meters installed. When customers fall into debt, suppliers attempt to collect payments over several weeks, which could include by email, letters, telephone and house visits. If they don’t receive payments or arrange a plan with customers, they can apply to install […]

Energy customers building up £800 in debts before suppliers act

Some energy suppliers are letting customers fall in more than £800 in debt on average before stepping in to help them manage to pay it back. The average debt when a customer set up a repayment plan was more than £600 for gas and electricity. However, Big Six firm npower and smaller suppliers Ecotricity, First […]

Water firms ‘must act to reduce customer debt’

Water companies must do more to deal with customers who are struggling to pay their bills. That’s according to water market regulator Ofwat, which estimates bad debt currently adds an average of £21 to each customer’s yearly bill. It says tackling this issue now by identifying which customers are having difficulties before they owe too much […]

Belarus pays off $726m gas debt to Russia’s Gazprom

Belarus has fully paid off its overdue debt of $726.2 million (£568m) for gas supplied by Gazprom. The payment is for gas provided by the Russian energy giant in 2016/17. According to Gazprom, it supplied 18.6 billion cubic meters of gas to Belarus in 2016 and 5.6 billion cubic meters of gas from January through […]

Customers in debt fall but amount owed increases

The number of customers in debt to their energy supplier fell in 2015. It dropped from more than 1.19 million in 2014 to 1.05 million last year for gas customers. The number of electricity customers in debt fell from more than 1.38 million to 1.22 million, according to a report from Ofgem. However, it added the […]

Ofgem proposes capping prepayment warrant charges

Ofgem is proposing to cap charges for installing prepayment meters (PPMs) under warrant for consumers in debt. It also proposes banning PPM warrant installation charges for the most vulnerable customers. When customers are in debt, one option is for their supplier to install a PPM under warrant, which would be a last resort for recovering […]

EU probes debt write-off for Romanian petrochemical firm

The European Commission has launched an in-depth investigation into Romania’s support for a petrochemical company. It will verify whether debt write-offs by Romania and continued supplies by state-owned enterprises in favour of Oltchim, despite the firm’s deteriorating financial situation, were in line with EU state aid rules. Oltchim is one of the largest petrochemical companies […]

Coal miner files for bankruptcy

The second largest coal mining and processing company in the US has filed for bankruptcy. Arch Coal, which has been affected by the weakening demand for coal and stringent environmental regulations, said it has reached an agreement with a majority of the lenders to erase $4.5 billion (£3bn) in debt from its balance sheet. It […]

Energy customers ‘owe suppliers £503m’

Energy customers collectively owe suppliers £507 million, according to a new survey. That’s £43 million more than in 2014, it claims. It revealed almost four million householders – 260,000 more than last year – are in debt to their energy suppliers, with the average debt at £130 – up from £128 last year. Almost a third […]