Published on 08 June 2011 03:30 PM
Responding to the announcement by Scottish Power that it is increasing its gas prices by 19 per cent and electricity prices by 10 per cent from August, Graeme Francis – Age Cymru’s Head of Policy and Public Affairs says:
“It would be very easy to be cynical about the timing of this announcement, coming as it does during the early summer when the last thing on people’s minds are the cold winter months and paying their heating bills.
“Fuel poverty affects 320,000 households in Wales who need to spend 10 per cent or more of their income on fuel in order to maintain adequate heating.
“One of the three main factors that influence whether someone will be living in fuel poverty is the cost of energy.
“The affordability of energy is an area that requires particular attention following rapid increases in fuel costs and several cold winters in a row.
“The Welsh and Westminster governments must work with Ofgem to ensure that customers are paying a fair price for gas and electricity.
“Under the present pricing regime energy companies appear to pass on price rises much quicker than they cut bills when the cost of fuel goes down.
“We also call for an end to price inequalities that penalise the poorest consumers who tend to use pre-payment meters or pay by cash or cheque.”