ScottishPower to reduce energy bills
ScottishPower is the latest energy supplier to announce price cuts for its gas and electricity customers.
The firm, which is the sixth largest energy provider with over five million customers, last year increased gas prices by a total of 49% and electricity prices by 23%.
From 31 March this year, it electricity customers will receive a 3% reduction in their bills, while gas customers will see their costs reduce by 7.5%. For an average ScottishPower dual fuel customer paying monthly by Direct Debit, this translates as a £54 reduction off their bills to £1156 3 per year.
It joins British Gas, Scottish & Southern Energy, EDF Energy and E.ON in announcing price cuts. Npower is the only supplier still keeping ‘schtum’ about its pricing.
And only Scottish & Southern Energy and ScottishPower have reduced bills for both their gas and electricity customers.
But commentators have criticised energy companies for the cuts, which pale in comparison to the rises seen in 2008.
Willie MacDiarmid, director of retail energy at ScottishPower, defends the cuts: “Although wholesale [energy] prices have fallen recently, the market remains volatile. The past year has seen unprecedented volatility in the wholesale energy market and the future outlook remains challenging.”
He claims that wholesale prices for gas remain 46% higher than in February 2007, while electricity costs are 40% more expensive.
“Against this backdrop we are working hard to protect our customers from this volatility and ensure that we offer the best possible value and service over the longer term,” he adds.