GP practices can expect to see their energy prices capped at ‘less than half’ of wholesale prices this winter, the Government has said.
Business secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg today announced that energy prices for businesses – including GP practices – across the UK will be capped, with the difference paid by the Government.
Under the new Government Energy Bill Relief Scheme, which will initially run for six months and apply to energy usage from 1 October to 31 March, the Government will provide a discount on wholesale gas and electricity prices.
The Government said the discounted price per unit of gas and electricity is ‘expected to be £211 per MWh for electricity and £75 per MWh for gas, less than half the wholesale prices anticipated this winter’.
It added that it will apply to fixed contracts agreed on or after 1 April 2022, as well as to deemed, variable and flexible tariffs and contracts. The support will be automatically applied to bills without any need to apply to the scheme.
This ‘includes the removal of green levies paid by non-domestic customers who receive support under the scheme’, it said.
However, the price reduction level will vary depending on each business’s contract type and circumstances, such as whether the wholesale element of the price they are paying is above the Government’s discounted price.
The Government said it will publish a review of the scheme in three months to ‘inform decisions on future support after March 2023’.
The review will focus on identifying the ‘most vulnerable non-domestic customers’ and how the Government will continue assisting them with energy costs, it added.
Emergency legislation to underpin the scheme will be introduced at the earliest opportunity when Parliament returns from recess in October.
A ‘parallel scheme’ will be established in Northern Ireland that is ‘based on the same criteria and offering comparable support, but recognising the different market fundamentals’, the Government said.
Prime Minister Liz Truss said: ‘I understand the huge pressure businesses, charities and public sector organisations are facing with their energy bills, which is why we are taking immediate action to support them over the winter and protect jobs and livelihoods.
‘As we are doing for consumers, our new scheme will keep their energy bills down from October, providing certainty and peace of mind.’
She added: ‘At the same time, we are boosting Britain’s homegrown energy supply so we fix the root cause of the issues we are facing and ensure greater energy security for us all.’
Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng said the Government has ‘stepped in to stop businesses collapsing, protect jobs, and limit inflation’.
The Government set out the scheme’s aims of ‘supporting growth, preventing unnecessary insolvencies and protecting jobs’.
And Pulse previously revealed that GP practices themselves may end up tens of thousands of pounds in deficit this winter amid rising inflation and fuel costs.
This story first appeared on our sister title, Pulse.