Rishi Sunak unveils new energy support scheme for UK businesses

Rishi Sunak unveils new energy support scheme for UK businesses

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Rishi Sunak is set to announce a new business energy bill support scheme next week, with all UK businesses receiving a discount on electricity bills from spring.

The government will also provide more generous targeted support to energy-intensive industries like steel and ceramics to help them cope with rising bills caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The overall package is set at a lower level than the current six-month corporate energy scheme, which is expected to cost around £20bn by the time it expires at the end of March.

In his autumn statement, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt said most companies would not receive additional support after April, arguing that subsidizing their costs was “unsustainable”.

But Hunt is now taking a more generous stance amid fears the energy crisis will stretch well beyond spring, with some analysts warning next winter could be even tougher for UK infrastructure and businesses.

Business groups have kept up the pressure on ministers to extend the current regime, under which all employers have benefited from a cap on energy prices.

However, the new schema is modeled differently. In contrast to the current cap on how much a company pays for energy, companies will instead be offered a discount on the wholesale price of electricity.

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