Responding to Centrica’s Interim Management Statement, Audrey Gallacher, Director of Energy at Consumer Focus, said:
‘Consumers will need clear evidence that price rises are warranted if they are to stomach further increases to their bills. People simply don’t know whether they are asked to pay is fair. The perception is that suppliers are quick to pass on high price rises and slow to pass on small price cuts.
‘Much greater transparency on costs, pricing and profits is needed for customers to know whether they’re getting a fair deal. Wholesale prices go up and down but customers need to know this is accurately reflected in their bill.
‘With additional costs also set to be added to our bills, to make our energy supply greener and more secure, it is essential that more help is put in place for those who need it. We believe extra revenue the Government receives from carbon taxes should be used to help the millions of people who are being hit by rising costs.’
Notes to Editors:
- Although energy consumption has fallen over winter 2011-12, due to the milder weather, average energy prices are higher than in winter 2010-11. The average energy bill is now £1,258 compared to £1,110 on 1 Jan 2011, based on gas consumption of 16,500 kWh and electricity consumption of 3,300 kWh per annum. This means that some consumers will be paying more for the same amount or even for less energy than they used last year.
- Prices rose by an average of 16.3% for electricity and 22.9% for gas, from winter 2010/11 to Autumn 2011. Price decreases at the start of 2012 saw prices fall by -5.5% for electricity and -4.9% for gas in comparison.