My right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Energy (Edward Davey) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.
Following a proposal from the Data and Communications Company (DCC) to adopt an alternative delivery plan, I have today approved the DCC’s plan as provided for under powers in the DCC’s licences – which were granted under sections 7AB(2) of the Gas Act 1986 and section 6(1A) of the Electricity Act 1989. Under this revised plan, the DCC will plan to deliver operational services from April 2016 rather than its current target of December 2015.
The Data and Communications Company is responsible for establishing the enduring data and communications infrastructure over which energy suppliers will operate smart electricity and gas meters.
It is vital that the DCC delivers to a plan in which all parties have confidence. I have therefore made available up to a maximum of six months of contingency which will be strictly governed by my Department, and must be duly justified, to enable the DCC’s systems and services to come together with the energy companies’ systems and processes in a coordinated start to the main installation phase.
In the meantime consumers are already benefiting from the early roll out of smart meters with over 1 million meters operating under the programme.
This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: