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SSE Airtricity bumps up bills by another 9.7 per cent

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Gary McDonald Business Editor

THE north's second largest power supplier SSE Airtricity is bumping up bills for the second time in just five months for its 170,000 customers in the north.

The company said the standard price of electricity will increase 9.7 per cent from August 1, meaning a typical household customer will pay £1.11 a week more, or £58 a year.

It comes on top of a 3.9 per cent hike in March, which added 43p a week to bills.

Power NI has already bumped up bills by 6.9 per cent for its 450,000 domestic users, while Electric Ireland is imposing a 10.2 per cent tariff hike from the start of next month.

SSE Airtricity says the change is driven by sustained increases in the wholesale energy market which affect all energy suppliers.

Managing director Klair Neenan said: “Since last summer, wholesale energy costs have almost tripled.

“These sustained increases are being compounded by reduced generation capacity from some power stations, which is putting pressure on wholesale energy prices.

“We've worked hard to limit and delay this impact on our customers and absorbed costs where possible, and we'll continue to watch the market carefully and look to reduce our prices when we can.

“And for those having difficulty with their bills, please contact us and we will work to find a solution.”

Raymond Gormley at the Consumer Council described the move as “unwanted news”, adding that it will adversely impact customers who are already experiencing financial pressures on their household budgets.

And he said: “We would again encourage all consumers to shop around to ensure they are on the best energy deal.”

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