Trade and Industry Press Notice No 46 101004

TRADE AND INDUSTRY COMMITTEE

COMMITTEE OFFICE     HOUSE OF COMMONS    7 MILLBANK     LONDON SW1P 3JA

Telephone: 020 7219 5777/5779

PN 46 of Session 2003-04

PRESS NOTICE
NEW INQUIRY


PRESS NOTICE
NEW INQUIRY

FUEL PRICES

The Trade and Industry Committee has decided to conduct a short inquiry into the effects of the recent increases in gas and electricity price on both domestic and industrial/commercial customers.

The electricity and gas regulator, Ofgem, has recently published its report on the causes of the significant price spikes that took place in October and November 2003, together with the price increases in August/September this year and the increases in forward prices for gas for winter 2004/05.  The Financial Services Authority has also announced that it has found no evidence of manipulation of the markets where wholesale gas is traded.

Taking Ofgem's analysis as a starting point, the Committee intends to focus on the effects of the price increases on all types of energy customers.  The inquiry will encompass such questions as whether the rises have been a temporary response to short-term supply problems or are the start of a long-term increase in UK energy prices, and what Ofgem's and the DTI's responses to the problem should be.

The Committee would welcome written evidence on the issues outlined above from anyone who wishes to comment. The closing date for written evidence on these issues is Wednesday 24 November.  The Committee hopes to take oral evidence in December. 

If possible, written evidence should take the form of a memorandum with numbered paragraphs and should be submitted, as a MS Word document, by e-mail to [email protected] with a single hard copy sent to the Clerk at the address above.

For further information please contact the Committee Office on 020 7219 5777/ 5779.

12 October  2004

ENDS