Knowledge Hub

  Economy and policy Crisis management

Government unveils new Energy Bills Discount Scheme for UK charities and business

The government has unveiled how it will support charities and other non-domestic customers with the cost of their energy bills. CFG's Richard Sagar takes a look at the new scheme and shares some initial thoughts.

The government has published details of its new Energy Bills Discount scheme. The new scheme will run until April 2024 and will replace the current Energy Bill Relief Scheme when it ends in March.

From 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024, eligible non-domestic customers that have a contract with a licensed energy supplier will see a unit discount of up to £6.97/MWh automatically applied to their gas bill and a unit discount of up to £19.61/MWh applied to their electricity bill, except for those benefitting from lower energy prices.

A higher level of support will be provided to sectors identified as being the most energy and trade intensive. These will include libraries, archives, museums, sites of historical interest and gardens. Discussions are now taking place with government to better understand the detail of the scheme and which sectors will and will not be eligible.

Commenting on the announcement, Richard Sagar, CFG's Head of Policy, said:

"We welcome the government’s decision to extend support for non-domestic customers with their energy costs until March 2024. This announcement brings long-awaited clarity that will now help charitable organisations plan for the coming months.

"We are also pleased that the government has listened to and made explicit mention of charities in its latest scheme. We thank all those organisations that took the time to respond to the government’s consultations, provide case studies and other information. Without that, the government wouldn’t have had the evidence it needed to shape this new scheme.

"However, the size of the measures is disappointing – £5.5bn over 12 months, as opposed to the previous £18bn over six months. We hope that further support can be provided in some form when the Spring Budget is announced on 15 March. We also look forward to hearing more about the Energy and Trade Intensive Industries scheme at the end of March. It’s good to see that some charities, such as museums, gardens, zoos and historical sites, will be included and look set to receive further support.

"We are now working with sector partners to look at what that additional support for the whole sector might look like, and we will continue to do all we can to urge government to focus on mitigating the impacts of the cost of living crisis.

"The cost of living crisis is exerting enormous pressure on everyone and charities are responding by opening their doors to more and more people in need, as costs continue to rise while wages and benefits lag further behind. It’s crucial that the government continues to look for more ways to support people, which will in turn support charities and business through this crisis."


For more information about the scheme, visit the government website.


« Back to the Knowledge Hub