Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Outgoing Energy Boss Defends Providers; ENERGY

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Outgoing Energy Boss Defends Providers; ENERGY

Article excerpt

Byline: COREENA FORD coreena.ford@ncjmedia.co.uk

THE outgoing chairman of British Gas parent Centrica has called for an end to the "Punch and Judy" debate over rising energy bills amid public and political anger at the "big six" providers.

In an article for The Sunday Telegraph, Sir Roger Carr sets out a robust defence of the industry and said investor confidence was being damaged by "political rhetoric".

Figures in an analyst note from Liberum Capital reveal the extent of the damage from the recent reputational blows suffered by the sector, with an estimated PS7 billion to PS11 billion wiped off from the value of energy stocks in the last two months.

Sir Roger, who is taking over as chairman of BAE Systems in the new year, wrote: "Political rhetoric [has] inflamed consumer passion, fed suspicion, discouraged investment and damaged investor confi-dence."

He added: "All energy companies have been accused of profiteering, collaborating with competitors, manipulating costs to disguise profits, and caring little for their customers. …

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