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A victory for openness and transparency

Posted on 6 May 2015

The Switching Sites and Price Comparison sites, which provide customers with an unbiased review of energy companies and prices, will have to become more transparent, under new rules announced by Ofgem this year.

Ofgem (Office of Gas and Electricity Markets) is the government department responsible for regulating the gas and electricity market. The key role of Ofgem involves protecting consumers by ensuring they are not being taken advantage of by energy suppliers or associated services.

In January this year, Ofgem declared that Switching Sites and Price Comparison sites have been found not to be displaying all of the cheapest tariffs available to on their sites when carrying out customer comparisons. Furthermore, these sites have not been telling customers which deals they earn commission on.

Switching Sites that are part of Ofgem's Consumer Confidence Code had to make changes to show all currently available energy tariffs by the end of March.

Several of the sites affected, including MoneySuperMarket and USwitch, have welcomed the new rules by Ofgem.

From March, the Switching Sites were compelled to show all the tariffs currently offered by providers which match a customer’s search requirements.

Ramsay Dunning, Co-operative Energy General Manager was delighted by the news. In his public statement he told energy customers; “Today’s announcement from Ofgem about new transparency rules for price comparison sites is a real victory for the consumer.

“Along with others, Co-operative Energy has been campaigning for over a year for this to become a reality and to finally have an open an honest approach and allow consumers to easily see all deals, not just those from energy suppliers paying the site commission.

“We welcome this new, tougher approach from Ofgem and believe that it will give consumers real choice and help make the whole process of switching energy suppliers even easier.”

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