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Most “Big Six” bosses welcome energy competition inquiry

The decision to launch an investigation into the issue of competition in the energy market has been met with mixed reactions, although most of the Big Six suppliers seem to welcome it, as its results “will help set public confidence”.

According to a media report on the matter, Npower CEO, Paul Massara commented: “It’s time that the realities of the energy market were made public… We repeat our support for a full competition inquiry to provide solid, lasting evidence about the state of competition in the energy market today so that consumers and companies can be clear about the foundation for energy policy in the future.”

Tony Cocker, Chief Executive of E.ON UK also believes the inquiry “will once and for all get to the heart of any structural issues that exist or are perceived to exist and help us to all deal with many of the myths and misinformation that surround the energy market”.

ScottishPower CCO Keith Anderson also welcomed the announcement, saying: “Now is the time for the acknowledged experts to consider differing perspectives on the market, resolve uncertainties and provide authoritative answers as to whether there are problems and if so, what measures are appropriate to address them.”

Furthermore, SSE,Chief Executive Alistair Phillips-Davies said: “Regulators, politicians, customers and SSE all want the same thing: an energy market that not only works for customers but is also trusted and seen to do so. We welcome any efforts to clear the air and in the meantime SSE will continue with its positive agenda for customers including its price freeze until at least 2016.”

Sam Laidlaw, CEO of British Gas owner Centrica, was the only “Big Six” top executive to criticize the decision, claiming that “if we have this competition referral our ability to invest is going to be handicapped because you wouldn’t invest in new power generation if there was a possibility that you might have to divest as a result of a competition referral. So that has heightened the political risk during this period.”

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