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Hundreds of Belgians have seen their energy supplier change without their consent, an investigation is underway

  • Post category:Economy News
  • Reading time:2 mins read

Nearly 90 complaints were received per month during the first half of the year, while 185 had been recorded over the whole of 2021.

We are therefore talking about nearly 600 people affected since the beginning of the year. However, this figure remains marginal:This therefore remains marginal when we know that 1/4 to 1/3 of customers have changed supplier during the year. We are talking about a few hundred cases out of two to three million people“, specifies Stéphane Bocqué, spokesman of the FEBEG (the federation of producers, suppliers and traders electricity), who learned of these problems through the press.

The Energy Ombudsman seems to indicate that the increase in cases is mainly in Flanders. It is true that given the situation of overheated market and high prices, the number of supplier switch is increasing“, Explain Stephane Bocque. “The market also had to deal with bankruptcies (e.g. in Flanders ‘WATTS’ and ‘Vlaamse Energieleverancier’) which resulted in many additional switch vendors compared to previous years.

The FEBEG recalls at the same time that “Ihe suppliers supply approximately 9 million EAN connection points in Belgium (electricity and gas)“.

How can these undesirable changes be explained?

According to Eric Houtman, the explanation lies in the new computer system of network operators and energy suppliers, which has a shortcoming that does not allow it to notice if an error is made with the EAN code of gas and electricity meters. electricity (a series of 18 digits to identify each meter).

The mediator hypothesis is quite plausible. Indeed, the computer system that coordinates customer data and energy suppliers was changed in November 2021. A change that coincides with the increase in the number of complaints received from the mediator in recent months.