§ 5. Mr. Ridley
asked the Secretary of State for Energy by what percentage domestic electricity bills would have to increase in the autumn in order to eliminate the subsidy received by the electricity industry and the payment of interest on its capital.
§ Mr. Ridley
Despite the policies of previous Governments as well as of this Government, would it not be more sen 8 sible to concentrate the taxpayers' money on helping those who cannot afford to pay their electricity bills rather than subsidising electricity as a commodity? Will the Government give further thought to this matter?
§ Mr. Eadie
If the hon. Gentleman will read the report of the debate that took place on this matter he will observe that the Government are proposing to increase heating costs by one-third to the people to whom he referred. I think that he will also be aware that the official Opposition have a motion down on this matter on Thursday.
§ Mr. Palmer
Does my hon. Friend agree that until the advent of the last Government the electricity industry prided itself on being the most efficient of the nationalised industries, that it had never asked for a subsidy, and that it would prefer to be without it today?