BORD GÁIS is to drop gas prices by 8% from February, resulting in a 34% drop for customers in little over a year.
The Commission for Energy Regulation (CER) announced it had proposed the cut and that it will come into effect from February 1, as long as it is approved after a consultation process.
The commission also looked at electricity prices and concluded there is no scope for change at this time, though they will continue to monitor the situation.
The price reduction will bring the average price per consumer down by €53 to €684, a 34% drop in just over a year according to Bord Gáis.
The prices peaked in September 2008 at an average of €916 per customer.
Since then there have been two reductions, the first of 12% in May bringing the average price down to €813 and the second of 9.8% in October, which further reduced it to €738.
“Bord Gáis Energy is pleased to be able to propose another reduction in gas prices for its customers following continued low gas costs on international energy markets,” said Bord Gáis Energy managing director David Bunworth.
“Stable wholesale prices mean that Bord Gáis is able to pass on savings to customers in the form of an interim price reduction. If the CER approves this decrease, customers will get their third price reduction since May of this year. When you combine this reduction with the savings Bord Gáis Energy announced in May and October 2009, we will see average household heating bills drop to levels 5% below those last seen in 2005 – customers are getting considerable value just at a time when they need it most.”
A CER spokesman said it had examined updated gas commodity prices and sales volumes for Bord Gáis Energy before making its cut proposal.
“This tariff reduction is due, in the main, to lower gas costs than forecast and exchange rate developments, as well as an adjustment of the previous year correction factors,” a CER spokesman said.
Energy Minister Eamon Ryan said: “The tariff reduction was largely due to lower gas prices than originally forecast and exchange rate developments.
“The overall pricing policy is to keep gas tariffs in line with underlying movements in the gas markets. This latest move continues the downward trend for natural gas prices. This is good news for the Irish consumer and the competitiveness of the Irish economy,” he said.
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