"Although deregulation of the energy market in the 1980s supposedly led to more competition, the reality is more similar to a monopoly within each region of the UK."
"Companies supplying electricity to UK homes where they inherited the network from the former utility boards are operating a near monopoly."
"Figures published in Parliament in a written answer to the shadow Energy Secretary, Caroline Flint, show that there is little real competition. Firms last night claimed the figures show the loyalty of customers they inherited from the boards, but Ms Flint said the companies appear to be exploiting consumers' unwillingness to shop around. With a baffling array of more than 500 tariffs on offer, consumers are often loath to switch."

"The time has come to create a tough new regulator to police the energy market properly, and force the energy companies to pass on price cuts to the public.", said Ms Flint.


It seems that switching providers is too difficult. Companies seem to have divided the turf among them, each being a happy near-monopolist where they operate and all of them agreeing that customers should not have it easy to compare.

Nonetheless, the article also includes the retailers' reactions. They all sound like this one: "We would fully expect our customer retention rates to be higher than those of our competitors because of our exceptional standards of service (...)"

21 Oct 2012 - 14:51
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