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ESB Must Be allowed to Lower Prices

18 February, 2009

EU Candidate, Cllr Toireasa Ferris, today called on the government to allow the ESB to reduce electricity bills for cash strapped families and industries. A small change in the law would allow the ESB to reduce prices in line with international fuel prices. Toireasa Ferris said: "I welcome the pledge by An Bord Gas to reduce gas prices by 25%. This reflects the drop in energy across the world and it is right that it is passed on to the hard pressed consumer." "However we now have the ridiculous situation where the ESB is unable to reduce its prices because of tariffs set by the energy regulator. Ireland has the highest electricity prices in Europe for businesses and domestic consumers. Yet because of regulations set by the government the Energy Regulator will not allow ESB to reduce its prices to customers." "Electricity prices have been identified as one of the major contributors to the lack of competitiveness by industries and businesses in Ireland. Steep electricity bills are causing considerable hardship to many families across Munster. This is no time for the government to artificially keep prices high.

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