Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, the energy networks have been working to keep Britain’s energy flowing and provide help and support to vulnerable customers.
Deferring the payment of network charges for some suppliers through a facility worth more than £350m will help ease cash flow for these suppliers, reducing the likelihood of them leaving the market.
Ofgem has confirmed that the scheme will be available as a last resort option, once all other lines of credit have been exhausted and that suppliers and gas shippers may apply to access the scheme where they, their parent company or any other company within their group do not have an investment-grade credit rating and therefore have fewer options for securing financing.
The measures are being offered at a time when there is increased pressure across the energy sector. Network companies are continuing to invest heavily in the networks of the future, which must support the UK’s continued need to replace ageing assets and ensure a transition to net-zero emissions.
David Smith, Chief Executive of Energy Networks Association said:
“We are continuing to keep Britain’s energy flowing during the COVID-19 pandemic and offer support to customers, especially those who are vulnerable. The networks are prepared to use their borrowing powers to help ease cash flow for suppliers by more than £350m. We want to ensure customers are protected and recognise that this exceptional measure will help do just that.”