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Sinn Féin calls for cross party pressure on Ian Pearson to block Phoenix price rise

19 March, 2004

Sinn Féin economy spokesperson, Fermanagh South Tyrone MP Michelle Gildernew MLA has issued a call for cross party pressure on NIO Minister Ian Pearson to step in and block the proposed Phoenix Natural Gas price increase of 20%.

 Ms Gildernew said:

 "The situation is unacceptable. This will hit those poorest hardest. It will further disadvantage our local businesses that are already saddled with high energy costs as a result of bad privatisation deals brokered by the British government.

 "Pressure from political parties across the spectrum needs to be brought to bear on Ian Pearson to force him to step in and block this price increase.

"The exploitation of its position by the British Gas subsidiary Centrica is unacceptable. It is naked profiteering. This is a company that makes huge profits and is uniquely exempt from the Climate Change Levy. " ENDS

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