Sinn Féin representative Liam Friel has welcomed the Competition Commission’s final determination on NIE’s price control conditions.
“Sinn Féin have lobbied long to have consumers rights protected when it comes to energy prices I welcome this determination by the Competition Commission to restrict NIE’s ability to unilaterally increase electricity charges.
“This determination means that bills will be £10 lower by 2017. But crucially NIE will also have to refund consumers for the period since April 2012 when this price control was originally due to come into force.
“I am happy that this long-running saga has finally been brought to an end and that we now have certainty in what the future holds for both electricity customers and investors.
“We have always been of the view that NIE had too much leeway when introducing what many considered unnecessary price rises on customers.
“It is therefore to be welcomed that the Competition Commission, in one of its final acts, has adjudicated favourably for electricity consumers in restricting NIE’s ability to inflict further increases on consumers at a time when household incomes have been significantly reduced.
“NIE has also resisted renewable projects being connected to the grid while quoting prohibitively high prices. This determination states that applications for renewable connections will now be looked at on a case-by-case basis by the regulator.”