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Energy prices need to drop to reflect reduction in whole sale oil cost

7 November, 2008 - by Jennifer McCann

Sinn Fein MLA and Deputy Chair of The Committee for Enterprise Trade & Investment Jennifer McCann has called on energy suppliers to immediately review and lower their prices following the reduction in the whole sale price of oil.

Speaking today Ms McCann said:

"Over the past year we have seen huge increases in fuel prices here. People are now paying almost double for electricity, gas and oil compared to what they were paying this time last year.

"The main point that Energy suppliers told us at the time of the increases was that such rises were due the rises in the wholesale cost of oil on the global market.

"Now that oil prices have come down the natural progression is that the prices of gas, electricity and home heating oil for customers should also come down. If they stay the same it would clearly be a case of Energy suppliers shoring up their own profits at a massive cost to the customer.

"These prices must be reduced immediately however to deal with such high prices in the short term Sinn Féin have called for an emergency fund to be set up by the Assembly and allocated to people who are finding it difficult to buy fuel this winter. We are now into November and people need to heat in their homes.

"In the longer term initiatives such as social tariffs need to be implemented here to ensure that those who cannot afford fuel costs are given the help they need."

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