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The Housing Executive (Touch)
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In a competitive market, suppliers are under pressure to keep their costs, and hence their prices, down to win new customers and keep their existing ones.
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We also price regulate other elements of the tariff wholesale and network costs and are always working to help everyone get a better deal. In order to explain the costs of energy bills it is important to understand the elements that make up your bill. This represents the generation and the raw cost of energy.
This element makes up the largest percentage of our energy bills. Wholesale costs are not only fundamental in how they drive the prices, but they are also extremely volatile. This represents the costs associated with transporting electricity and gas from generators to the final consumer. Networks costs also include a number of energy costs that arise because of government policy.
Network and policy costs are added onto the price of each unit of electricity and gas which is consumed. The total network costs do not vary by large amounts year on year, however if consumption levels fall the network charge per unit of energy consumed will rise. The network element of these costs is price controlled in both electricity and gas.
Supply costs are those needed to run the individual companies who supply and bill the end consumers. The electricity and gas in the Greater Belfast area markets have been open to competition to domestic customers since and respectively. However, there were no competing suppliers in the electricity or gas domestic markets until The Ten Towns area opened to gas competition for domestic and small business customers in April and there is currently only one domestic supplier in this area.
As competition grows, and consumers shop around for better deals, we continue to review the supply market to make sure it works in the best interests of consumers.