Prime Minister David Cameron says the Government will write to millions of customers to encourage them to switch to cheaper energy deals.
This follows today's crunch summit involving leading politicians, energy suppliers, the regulator Ofgem and consumer groups including MoneySavingExpert.com to tackle rising energy costs, which have seen typical annual bills soar to over £1,300 a year.
Suppliers will write to eight million customers who don't pay by monthly direct debit, which is cheaper, to tell them how they can save money by changing payment method.
Cameron said: "We are making energy companies be competitive. They're permanently being watched by Ofgem to make sure it is a competitive market, and we are making them make their energy available so that others can come in and provide customers with a good service.
"We're also writing to millions of customers today to encourage them to shop around to get the cheapest possible deal they can for their energy.
"So this is about the Government, about the Citizens Advice Bureau, about other organisations, all working together to help people to keep their energy bills down."
Cameron and Energy Secretary Chris Huhne outlined their plans ahead of the summit this morning, writing exclusively for MoneySavingExpert.com, which included calls for energy firms to develop simple tariffs.
Further measures decided upon in the summit include:
- On the front page of this winter's bills, providers will include a message encouraging customers to call their supplier or visit a website to find out if they could save money by switching to a cheaper tariff.
- Four million of the most vulnerable energy customers will receive letters from the Government telling them they are eligible for free or heavily discounted insulation to their loft or cavity walls, in a bid to make homes more energy efficient.
- The Government has also launched a new 'Check, Switch, Insulate' campaign and page on the Directgov website to help give consumers more info on how to save money.
Shadow Energy and Climate Change Secretary Caroline Flint says: "Cameron and Huhne's warm words won't heat a single home during the bitter winter ahead and show just how out of touch this Government is.
"It is an insult to say that we can all save £200 by shopping around for the best tariff. If it were that easy, 21 million households would change their tariff today.
"They know there are over 400 tariffs and it is a nightmare trying to find the right one, even Energy Minister Charles Hendry said he couldn't work out the best tariff.
"People deserve a government that's prepared to stand up to powerful vested interests and deal with rising electricity and gas bills."