THE SNP has challenged the UK Government to slash energy bills by 20% as households are being forced to “pay through the nose for Westminster failure”.

In April, the Tories are planning to hike the cost of the Energy Price Guarantee (EPG) by 20% from £2500 to £3000 for typical annual consumption.

However, the SNP has urged the UK Government to instead introduce a 20% cut as the wholesale price of gas begins to fall.

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It also comes after energy giants BP, Shell and Equinor all reported billions in profits earlier this week.

An analysis by the House of Commons Library, produced for the SNP, shows there has been a 59% decrease in the wholesale price of gas since the EPG was introduced in October.

As the forecast cost for the EPG scheme showed the Treasury saved £5 billion, with the initial estimate of £42bn falling to £37bn, the SNP has called for the savings to be passed on to households.

And, it comes as the National Audit Office (NAO) estimated this week that the Treasury will save billions on their original business case for the full range of UK government energy support schemes, due to the reduction in the wholesale gas price.

The National: Flynn has challenged the Tory government to commit to slashing energy bills by 20 per centFlynn has challenged the Tory government to commit to slashing energy bills by 20 per cent (Image: Parliament TV)

The House of Commons analysis reads: “In November 2022 Energy consultancy Cornwall Insight estimated that the EPG would cost a total of £42 billion over 18 months.

“Lower wholesale prices since the Autumn Statement have led Cornwall Insight to reduce their forecasts of the costs of the EPG.

“Their latest, made at the start of January put it at £37 billion. As of now, at a minimum there is a Treasury saving of £5 billion from the forecasts in November.

“These forecasts also showed the price cap falling below the EPG level from June 2023, so the policy is a cost to the UK government up to the end of Q2 2023.”

Stephen Flynn MP, SNP Westminster group leader, said Scotland was an “energy rich country” but households were having to “pay through the nose for Westminster failure as the Tories trash the economy and the cost of living soars”.

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He added: "Tory plans to increase people's energy bills, yet again, from April are abhorrent and must be stopped. Many households are already paying three times what they paid a year ago, while energy companies make record profits and the Tories refuse to act.

"Instead of ramping up people's bills, the Tories must cut them by at least 20% and commit to further reductions as wholesale prices fall.

“There must also be a commitment to continue the £400 Energy Bill Support Scheme for all households, instead of cutting off support in March.

"These crucial policies can be funded through the billions of pounds in savings the UK government is set to make from the reduction in the wholesale price of gas, as well as by taxing share buy backs, expanding the windfall tax and scrapping nom dom tax status.

"Scotland must never again be forced to pay the price of Westminster failure. The Tory cost of living crisis shows exactly why Scotland needs independence - so we can invest in renewable energy security, escape Brexit and Tory cuts, and build a stronger economy in Europe."

The Treasury has been contacted for comment.