Written answers

Thursday, 9 March 2023

Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment

Energy Prices

Photo of Cormac DevlinCormac Devlin (Dún Laoghaire, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

170. To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if he will provide details of meetings his officials had with the Commission for the Regulation of Utilities to examine the current prices being charged by regulated utilities between 1 September 2022 and 1 March 2023, in tabular form; the efforts being made to ensure that reductions in wholesale energy prices are being passed on to consumers; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12044/23]

Photo of Eamon RyanEamon Ryan (Dublin Bay South, Green Party)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) was assigned consumer protection functions under the 1999 Electricity Regulation Act and subsequent legislation and has statutory responsibility for the compliance by energy suppliers with their consumer protection obligations.

The electricity and gas retail markets in Ireland operate within a European Union regulatory regime wherein electricity and gas markets are commercial and liberalised. Operating within this overall EU framework, responsibility for the regulation of the electricity and gas markets, including the matters raised by the Deputy, is solely a matter for the CRU.

In line with long standing policy on deregulating price setting, CRU ended its regulation of retail prices in the electricity market in 2011, and in the gas market in 2014. Price setting by electricity suppliers, including standing charges is a commercial and operational matter for the companies concerned.

Each such company has its own different approach to pricing decisions over time, in accordance with factors such as their overall company strategic direction and developments in their cost base. Within a competitive environment, providers also have costs such as staffing, Tax, infrastructure, and cost of Network Tariffs which in turn affects end users’ bills.

Officials from my Department meet on an ongoing basis with a range of stakeholders including the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU)

Government throughout 2022 introduced a €2.4 billion package of supports and as part of Budget 2023 introduced a bundle of once off measures worth €2.5 billion. This includes the Electricity Cost Emergency Benefit Scheme, lump sum payments to fuel Allowance recipients, and persons on the working family payment. More recently, in February of this year, Government announced a €1.2 billion package to help families, businesses, pensioners, carers and people with disabilities.

CRU provides a dedicated email address for Oireachtas members, which enables them to raise questions on general energy regulatory matters to CRU at oireachtas@cru.ie for timely direct reply.


No comments

Log in or join to post a public comment.