Background to the report

Since Autumn 2021, energy bills have increased significantly due to various factors including an increased global demand for gas following the pandemic and later the impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on energy markets. Average annual household bills for gas and electricity increased from £1,277 in winter 2021-22 to £3,549 in winter 2022-23. The government has implemented support schemes to reduce the impact of energy bill increases from this winter.

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The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has overall responsibility for the design and implementation of the energy bill support. HM Treasury supported BEIS in designing the schemes and approved the budget.

Scope of the report

This report provides the basis for early Parliamentary scrutiny of how BEIS has designed and implemented the energy bills support and the potential costs. We have not concluded on the value for money of the schemes. We expect to revisit performance of these schemes in later reports once more evidence is available about the costs and benefits.

This report is in three parts:

Part One sets out how the energy bill support works and how much BEIS expects it to cost.

Part Two sets out how BEIS implemented these schemes quickly, to make sure households and businesses were able to receive support in time for this winter.

Part Three identifies the risks that BEIS must now manage, how it plans to manage them and the future of the schemes.


BEIS deserves credit for working quickly to introduce the schemes so that most households and businesses have received support in time for winter, and flexing its approach to approving new programmes and staffing enabling it to do so.  

BEIS recognised that by moving at speed it had to make compromises. For example, the schemes provided almost universal support which could lead to financial support going to households and businesses which did not need it. Rapid implementation meant BEIS could not complete as detailed an assessment of the potential for fraud and error as would normally be the case.

Moving to make the schemes more targeted will require BEIS to operate a more sophisticated approach to financial control and to consider the potential increased risk of fraud and error.


Publication details

Press release

View press release (7 Feb 2023)

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