13.8% electricity rate rise slammed

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The decision by leading electricity provider, PowerNI, to hike prices by 13.8 per cent from October has been criticised by Sinn Féin’s energy spokesperson, Sandra Duffy.

The firm said a 30 per cent year-on-year rise in the price of gas - the main fuel used in electricity production - sparked the increase.

Colr. Duffy said: “This surge will see an annual bill increase of £68 per year for PowerNI customers, on top of a 5.6 percent increase in 2017, ultimately placing increased pressure on many people who are already struggling to pay their bills.

“PowerNI has stated that the increase is due to rising gas and oil prices which have made electricity supply more costly.

“While Sinn Féin acknowledges the rising costs of energy production, we feel these issues could be partially mitigated if PowerNI took more steps to diversify its electricity supply.”