The boss of Manx Gas’ parent company has said the company would’ve put up prices sooner if it was able to.
Jo Cox was appearing at the Economic Policy Review Committee when she was asked about the new framework.
Last month saw Tynwald members approve a new regulation framework, which just days later allowed a price increase of 58% with just 24 hours notice for islanders. A previous bid to secure a voluntary agreement, which would have seen customers paid a rate averaging £93, ultimately proved unsuccessful.
In response to a question from chairwoman Claire Christian, Mrs Cox said: ‘On January 1, we went into regulation consultation and so we prize froze. If the voluntary agreement had been approved in Tynwald and moved into, that new voluntary agreement, we would’ve put prices up a lot earlier. So that £93 would have been paid but a prices increase would have come into effect because the prices started increasing from August.
‘So we would’ve been operating under the old voluntary proposed framework and therefore we didn’t implement a price increase until October, therefore protecting customers from £320 increase which would have been implemented under the recommended voluntary framework. The regulation framework operates under a different percentage profit return and therefore we didn’t implement that increase until April 1 2022, therefore we as Manx Gas took a subsidisation of £7.4m as a result of delaying that price increase.
‘So actually it’s in the interest of the consumer because the consumer would’ve got a £93 rebate but a price increase would’ve come in a lot earlier to the value of up to £320 increase per annum. So actually the regulation framework is better for the consumer because it delayed that price increase.’