ENERGY companies were called on to cut their prices to reflect the collapse in wholesale costs - writes Charlie Weston
The call came after one of the smallest players in the market, Flogas, said it would reduce the price of gas for households by 2.5pc, with effect from the start of next month.
The reduction will save householders around €20 a year. It is the second time in a year Flogas has reduced its prices.
But there is huge scope for more cuts across the board given that wholesale gas prices are down 23pc in the past year, according to Simon Moynihan of price comparison siteBonkers.ie.
He said there have been a number of small reductions in price from Electric Ireland and SSE Airtricity.
But he said the newest player in market, Energia, has just introduced discounts of up to 26pc for those prepared to switch to it for electricity, gas or both fuels.
“If you do not switch from your current suppliers you may get a 2pc to 2.5pc reduction in costs, but if you want to get discounts of up to 26pc then you need to move provider,” he said.
Electric Ireland has just cut its gas price by 2.5pc, while its electricity prices fell last November.
SSE Airtricity will introduce a €23 reduction in the annual cost of its electricity from next Monday.
Mr Moynihan said: “I would call on all suppliers who have not done so to cut their prices. There is plenty of room to do so given the fall in wholesale gas prices.”
The latest data shows he cost of buying natural gas on the wholesale market dropped significantly toward the end of last year.
Irish wholesale prices were down 23pc on average during the fourth quarter compared with the same period last year, according to the 2015 Wholesale Energy Market Report published by Vayu Energy.
The company, which supplies gas to industrial and commercial market, said that surging gas supplies and suppressed demand have been consistent drivers of declining wholesale gas prices during last year.