British gas has announced today that it will be raising its electricity prices by 12.5 percent as of mid-September.

The owner of British gas, Centrica, has admitted that more than three million utilities customers will be affected by this energy price hike.

This has sparked outrage amongst many of the companies’ customers as they threaten to switch electricity providers to send British Gas a message.

The company claims that, although base costs have not gone up, transmission and distribution costs had risen and that government policy was also adding to the overall costs. It also pointed out that this was the first rise since November 2013 and that they were one of the last to raise prices.

Electricity Pylons 1 (PD)

The government on the other hand says that its policy changes could not explain the price rises by British gas.

Alan Whitehead MP, Labour Party Shadow Minister for Energy and Climate Change, said:

Today’s announcement shows that the Conservative Government has still not got a grip on the broken energy market, with companies raising prices yet again.
 
“This is why we need a Labour Government to radically transform the energy market, bring down energy bills and transition to a low carbon future.
 
“At the very least the Conservatives should institute the energy price cap which Theresa May promised during the campaign.”

Tim Farron MP, former Liberal Democrat leader, said:

This is a colossal increase that will really hurt customers already struggling with rising prices due to the deteriorating economic situation.
 
“As a former public utility, British Gas has a huge number of customers who don’t switch, and is clearly treating these people like cash-cows.
 
“We need to open up the market to more competition to drive down prices and take action to help lower income families. As things stand there will be a lot of people in fuel poverty this winter shivering in homes they cannot afford to heat or even light.

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