- Profits at SSE slipped by 6% last year and it lost another 430,000 gas and electricity customers to rival suppliers.
- It will now increase its standard variable tariff by 7.7% for electricity consumers and by 5.7% for gas customers from 11 July 2018.
- This will add £76 to dual-fuel energy customers’ bills per year on average.
From the same date, SSE will also axe its £6 per fuel annual paper-less billing discount from
An SSE spokesman said the ‘difficult decision’ to raise energy prices was taken in light of increasing costs.
He added: “Increasing energy prices is always a last resort.
“However, sustained increases in the cost of supplying energy, principally from higher wholesale energy prices and the cost of delivering government policy initiatives designed to modernise and decarbonise Britain’s energy system, must eventually be reflected in prices.
“Policies such as those that support low-carbon forms of electricity generation and the national roll-out of smart meters offer benefits for customers in the long-term, but require significant up-front investments which are funded through energy bills.
“SSE continues to believe that these policies should instead be funded more fairly through means-tested general taxation.”
A spokesman for the consumer website www.VoucherCodesPro.co.uk commented: “To increase customers’ bills by over £70 a year is a huge jump, but more so when you realise that’s an increase for the average homeowner of 6.7%.
“This change won’t come into effect until July, giving Britons a few months to prepare for the extra £6+ monthly charge.
“No doubt this price hike is as a result of the Scottish energy company having dropped 6% in profits following over 430,000 customers leaving last year and going with other energy companies – but surely that would be telling them that the already competitive market is not working in their favour and, if anything, they should look to make their prices more affordable?
“Many families in the UK who are struggling to make ends meet, or struggling with ever-increasing bills, are going to feel this £76 a year price hike and, for many, it will mean that something has got to go in order to cover the additional costs.
“It may be that they cut back on the energy that they’re using, it may be that they have to cut back on groceries or even leave themselves with even less disposable income than they already have. It’s not ideal at all, even with a few months’ notice.”
An energy spokesman for Citizens’ Advice Scotland, commented: “Once again, this is an increase that will see fuel bills rise at several times the rate of inflation, just like the recent rises by the other big energy companies.
“If ‘increases in suppliers’ costs are the reasons for these price hikes, then we would expect that any reductions in those costs should also be reflected in household bills. And if costs do not rise as forecast, we would expect these increases to be quickly reversed for consumers.”
31 May 2018