£100m increase in help for fuel poor

The number of customer accounts on social tariffs grew to one million by March 2009 from 800,000 in October 2008.

The Government announced in the 2008 Budget a three-year commitment given by energy suppliers to increase their spending on social tariffs and other social programmes.

Ofgem’s report on the first year of the suppliers’ commitment shows that each supplier met its target for 2008-09 and jointly they exceeded the target of £151million set for the end of the period in 2010-11.

Maxine Frerk, Ofgem’s Director of Governance, Consumer and Social Affairs, said: "This is a very encouraging outcome for the first year of the commitment, especially in the current tough economic climate. We are particularly pleased to see the increase in the number of customers benefiting and encourage suppliers to continue to focus on how best to help their vulnerable customers who are struggling to pay their bills."

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