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Publicly Owned Energy Company

Publicly Owned Energy Company

Background

The recent draft Energy Strategy Consultation which ran from January – May 2017 included a question on the potential role and remit of “a Government Owned Energy Company to help the growth of local and community projects”. In addition to the consultation a workshop was held, and well attended, on the 27 March 2017 to explore with stakeholders’ first-hand their views on the potential for a Government Owned Energy Company. 

The formal Energy Strategy consultation analysis will be published shortly.

Proposition

On 10 October 2017, the First Minister, Rt Hon Nicola Sturgeon MSP, made an announcement committing to set up a publicly-owned not-for-profit energy company by the end of the current Parliament. The intention, as set out by the First Minister is to sell energy, whether bought wholesale or generated in Scotland, to customers at as low a price as possible, and in so doing to potentially provide people with more choice, and particularly those for whom fuel poverty is a key concern.   The commitment is to have the Company operational by the end of this current Parliament (March 2021).

Current Action

Consideration of how to best take forward the ambitions set out by the First Minister is now underway through external advice. It is important that the information is reviewed through a commercial lens prior to this being presented to Scottish Ministers to ensure that all early decisions taken support the development of a viable and market compliant solution.

Next Steps

Further details on the publicly owned energy company for Scotland will be made available when the Scottish Government publishes its finalised Energy Strategy at the end of year.

As part of our current work, particular thought is being given to identify the best ways to seek early views from interested stakeholders on our emerging proposals.

Future Consultancy Support

If the Scottish Government needs to procure future goods or services in support of the Publicly Owned Energy Company, we will do so in compliance with all applicable rules.  This might include new competitions advertised through the Public Contracts Scotland Portal (here) or pre-existing contracts and frameworks.