Millions face choosing heating or eating this winter, says Martin Lewis
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Finance guru Martin Lewis warns thousands of people in the UK could be thrown into fuel poverty, amid rises in wholesale gas prices.
At Prime Ministers Questions in the Commons on Wednesday (January 5), deputy leader Angela Rayner stepped up Labour's call for the 5% VAT rate on energy bills to be scrapped in a bid to help households facing rising costs.
The Prime Minister said ministers have not ruled out further assistance for households facing big increases in energy charges when the price cap is reviewed in April, but said the Government was already doing a number of things to address the problem.
However, according to some predictions, energy bills could rise to more than 50 per cent for millions on a standard tariff between now and April 2022.
In April, the energy price cap - which limits how much suppliers can charge - will also rise.
Money-Saving Expert Mr Lewis is urging the government to 'intervene, something has to be done'.
"I used to warn against being on the price cap because it was over expensive, but right now the default tariff most people are on means energy firms are being forced to supply energy at substantially below cost price," he said.
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"That rate lasts until April 1 and it moves based on wholesale prices between August last year and the end of January.
"We have a pretty good idea of what that new price will be and Cornwall analysts are predicting the price cap on April 1 will be increased by 51%.
"There are lots of people out there who can afford the increase, but there are millions of people who will be thrown into fuel poverty who will get close to having that choice between heating and eating.
"What we have to do is make sure that the millions of people who do not have enough income to pay a £600 rise on energy bills on a typical rate get the money so they don't have to turn the heating or electricity off, or starve."