UK says energy firms agreed to do more to help people as bills surge

A warning label is seen on the front of a gas meter at a house in Manchester, Britain, September 18, 2021. REUTERS/Phil Noble

LONDON, Aug 11 (Reuters) - British finance minister Nadhim Zahawi said on Thursday that energy companies have agreed to work with the government to help the people who need it the most, ahead of a further surge in energy bills going into the winter.

"The government continues to evaluate the extraordinary profits seen in certain parts of the electricity generation sector and the appropriate and proportionate steps to take," a government statement said after a meeting between Zahawi, energy companies and Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

The government is facing growing calls to provide more support to households struggling with rising energy bills, and has come under criticism for its decision to leave major fiscal decisions to the new prime minister, who will take office next month.

Johnson reiterated that decision in Thursday's meeting with energy companies, the government said.

Britain is bracing for already-high energy bills to more than triple this year, with charities warning that millions of people could be forced into poverty if the government does not launch a multi-billion pound support package to soften the blow.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, the frontrunner to replace Johnson, said on Wednesday she would work with energy companies to bring down prices if she becomes prime minister. read more

Reporting by Muvija M; Writing by Sachin Ravikumar; Editing by Kate Holton

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