11:33 am, Tue 05 Nov 2013
Ed Miliband has pledged to introduce new social tariffs in the water industry in a bid to drive down living costs.
Speaking in Battersea, Mr Miliband attacked the Government on the issue of the cost of living crisis and vowed to "stand up for markets that work for working people".
Ed Miliband addresses an audience at Battersea power station this morning.
Mr Miliband said the water industry should be "scrutinised to make sure it is working properly", during an interview with the
Evening Standard last week.
The water industry is the latest sector to be scrutinised by the Labour leader after he promised to
if his party won the next general election. freeze gas and electricity bills until 2017
Read: Environment Secretary: Affordable water bills 'crucial'
7:17 am, Tue 05 Nov 2013
"Something has gone really wrong" in the UK energy market and Parliament has to "tackle that", the shadow energy secretary told
Labour's Caroline Flint said a 46% drop in the wholesale price which was not passed onto customers when her party were in charge, but warned bills were getting worse under the coalition government.
"Prices are going up three times as fast under this Government than they were under us and we need to tackle that."
1:32 am, Tue 05 Nov 2013
Environment Secretary Owen Paterson has told water firms it is "crucial" that water bills are kept affordable for "hardworking people".
We know that household budgets are under pressure, and keeping water bills affordable is a crucial way we can help hardworking people.
That is why we are pressing hard to make sure customers get a fair deal, by encouraging water companies to look closely at any price increases, introduce social tariffs for vulnerable customers and crack down on bad debt.
– Environment Secretary Owen Paterson
Read: Water firms urged to curb prices by Government
12:01 am, Tue 05 Nov 2013
Environment Secretary Owen Paterson has called on water companies to "look closely" at whether price increases are necessary and introduce special tariffs for hard-pressed households.
Environment Secretary Owen Paterson has urged water companies to "look closely" at whether price increases are necessary
In a letter to suppliers, Mr Paterson said the firms should recognise the financial strain people are under.
The intervention came ahead of an Ofwat ruling expected later this week on an application from Thames Water to increase bills by £29 in 2014-15.
The regulator is expected to reject the application and has questioned the profits being made by firms.
It suggested its next Price Review could ease the upward pressure on bills by up to £750 million after 2015.
Read: Water companies next to face Government scrutiny