The Energy Secretary Ed Davey has said that the 'full force of the law' will come down on oil firms if it turns out that they did manipulate oil prices.
Energy Secretary Ed Davey said the oil and gas industry is a vital strategic resource.
"With our support for carbon capture and storage, for decommissioning and by encouraging increased collaboration across different energy sectors, especially offshore, there will also be new sustainable growth opportunities for the industry and the wider UK supply chain."
The Government will today announce an oil and gas strategy that aims to secure thousands of jobs and billions of pounds of investment.
Plans for "tax certainty", skills development and supply chain support will be discused by three secretaries of state in Aberdeen, the oil capital of Europe.
Business Secretary Vince Cable, Scottish Secretary Michael Moore and Energy Secretary Ed Davey will speak to business leaders about the strategy this morning.
The Government has warned energy companies that the recent cold snap is "no excuse" for putting up electricity and gas bills.
– Ed Davey, Energy Secretary
I'm extremely concerned to make sure that people can afford their energy bills and when we have these cold weather snaps people who are on the lowest incomes get help with cold weather payments.
And the coalition has trebled the amount that people can get in cold weather payments to make sure that the most vulnerable get the help when they need it.
But, I'm not complacent. We've got to make sue that the market is efficient as possible and energy companies can't use a temporary cold weather snap as an excuse to push up bills.
The Lib Dem Energy Secretary Ed Davey has told ITV News he is "delighted" Labour has "seen the error of their ways" by announcing plans for a "mansion tax" on houses worth £2 million:
– Energy Secretary Ed Davey
Our flagship policy is fairer taxes.
People copying you is the best form of flattery.
If Labour are realising they should have supported the "mansion tax" when we argued for it when they were in government and could have delivered it, then I am delighted that they have seen the error of their ways.
As new inflation figures are expected to stay well above the Government's target of 2% the Governor of the Bank of England is due to give evidence at Treasury Select Committee hearing on the Financial Policy Committee's November 2012 report.
Ed Davey, the Energy Secretary will also appear before the Energy Bill Committee later today, it is expected that increases in energy bills will have played a large part in the above target inflation figures when they are released.
There is no fracking going on here in Balcombe in West Sussex, but Cuadrilla does have planning permission to start exploratory drilling.
The company held a public meeting about that earlier this year and they had a very rough ride indeed.
Energy Secretary Ed Davey has said that the best scientific advice suggests that fracking can be carried out safely, but only if it is regulated properly.
But he also said that it should only go ahead if the public are confident it is safe.
The people I have spoken to this morning suggest that Ed Davey and the Government have a long way to go to convince people that fracking can be done safely.
In a written statement released before his House of Commons appearance, the Energy Secretary told MPs that any commercial extraction of shale gas was years away:
– ed davey, energy secretary
It will be well into next year before any new exploration work has all the necessary consents to proceed.
Whether any production operations may be proposed will depend on the success of the exploration work but, in any event, this is likely to be some years away yet.
Speaking to reporters in Blackburn, Lancashire, the Energy Secretary said:
– ed davey, energy secretary
Shale gas represents a promising new potential energy resource for the UK ...
My decision is based on the evidence. It comes after detailed study of the latest scientific research available and advice from leading experts in the field.
We are still in the very early stages of shale gas exploration in the UK and it is likely to develop slowly.
It is essential that its development should not come at the expense of local communities or the environment.
Fracking must be safe and the public must be confident that it is safe.
Fracking will be allowed to resume in the UK but under new controls, the Government has announced.
Energy Secretary Ed Davey said fracking will resume under strict regulatory measures "is likely to develop slowly". He said: "Fracking must be safe and the public must be reassured it is safe".
He added that although shale gas exploration remains in its early stages, it offers a promising new energy resource that could help the move towards a low carbon economy and away from our reliance on gas from abroad.
Shale gas can be found through seismic surveys in rock below the ground.
But the process has attracted strong opposition in the UK as campaigners say the drilling causes earthquakes and the chemicals that are used can pollute the water supply.