12/10/2012

British Gas Price Rise

British Gas is to hike its domestic gas and electricity prices by an average of 6% on 16 November 2012.

As a result, annual dual fuel bills for British Gas customers with average consumption will increase by around £80.

British Gas knows that this £1.50 per week average increase will be unwelcome news for customers, but the company is facing rising wholesale prices, as well as higher costs to upgrade the national grid, and to deliver the Government's policies for a clean, energy-efficient Britain.

British Gas is also increasing the help available to customers:

•Loft and wall cavity insulation, which can each save the average household more than £100 per year, is available free of charge. More than seven million homes in Britain remain inadequately insulated.

•To help its existing energy customers guard against future rises, British Gas is launching a new tariff that not only fixes prices for a year at our new levels, but guarantees that should standard prices fall, customers' prices will fall by the same amount.

•British Gas has the widest eligibility criteria for the Warm Home Discount – a £130 credit on the annual electricity bill given to customers who are elderly and most in need.

Customers who have taken advantage of the range of energy efficiency measures available have seen their gas consumption drop by as much as 40%. This is one of the reasons why British Gas customers’ actual bills have, on average, only risen in line with inflation over the past three years.

British Gas Managing Director, Phil Bentley, said: "We know that household budgets are under pressure and this £1.50 per week rise will be unwelcome. However, we simply cannot ignore the rising costs that are largely outside our control, but which make up most of the bill.

"Britain's North Sea gas supplies are running out, and British Gas has to pay the going rate for gas in a competitive global marketplace. Furthermore, the investment needed to maintain and upgrade the national grid to deliver energy to our customers’ homes, and the costs of the Government’s policies for a clean, energy efficient Britain are all going up.

"We need an energy efficiency culture in Britain today; rising prices don’t have to mean rising bills. We are offering a huge amount of help to customers to help them cut the amount of energy they use and keep their bills under control.

"We're also spending more than any other energy company on people who need the most help."

(CD/GK)

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