Kwasi Kwarteng – 2021 Statement on Bulb Energy Going into Administration

The statement made by Kwasi Kwarteng, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, in the House of Commons on 24 November 2021.

As many people in the House will know, when energy suppliers leave the market, the regulator, Ofgem, runs a competitive supplier-of-last-resort process. Last week, Bulb informed the Government and Ofgem that it would be leaving the market. Ofgem has advised that the supplier-of-last-resort process is not viable for Bulb because of the size of its customer book. Ofgem has, with my consent, applied to the court to appoint energy administrators. If appointed by the court, the administrators will continue to operate Bulb under what is called the special administration regime, which is set out clearly in legislation.

We will update the House once the court has made its determination, but I wish to clarify a couple of points. First, a special administration regime is a temporary arrangement that provides an ultimate safety net to protect consumers and ensure continued supply. The special administration regime will keep bills at the lowest cost that it is reasonably practical to incur while ensuring that the market remains stable. The House should understand that we do not want the company to be in this temporary state for longer than is absolutely necessary. Supplies remain secure and credit balances will be protected. Finally, all domestic customers in Great Britain are, of course, protected by the energy price cap, which remains firmly in place.