Updates to the Marketing Code of Practice for Business Customers

30 January 2020

Today we publish our information paper on the changes and clarifications that are being made to the Marketing Code of Practice (The Code) for non-domestic customers in Northern Ireland.

This paper sets out clarifications and amendments to be made to our energy supplier Marketing Code of Practice for Non-Domestic customers.

These changes are to mirror those changes made to the domestic marketing code in 2017 which were required as a result of various issues which arose due to different interpretations of cross referencing etc. This Code of Practice applies to all electricity and gas suppliers in NI who supply Non-Domestic Customers.

The changes to the Code are for clarification purposes only. For example there is no longer cross referencing between the different sections of the Code.  However, there has been an extension in the length of time some information needs to be held for, such as telephone recordings and information to identify a sales agent. This has been extended from 6 months to 2 years.  The current Section 6 ‘Website/Telephone’ has been split into separate sections to deal with inbound telephone marketing and sales and website marketing and sales separately. Both these changes mirror changes made to the domestic marketing code in 2017.

In addition to this corrections have been made to the current non domestic code with regards to to the formatting of tariff tables, which should not include VAT. Also, one mention of a ‘cooling off period’ has been removed as it was included in the code in error, and is not relevant to the non-domestic energy market.

Suppliers should already be compliant with the Code, but in relation to the extension in time required to hold information, will have 3 months from the publication of this paper to comply with this new obligation.