HC Deb 26 March 1990 vol 170 cc10-1
12. Mr. Rost

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy when he next expects to meet the Director General of Ofgas to discuss British Gas tariffs.

Mr. Peter Morrison

My right hon. Friend and I meet the Director General of Gas Supply from time to time to discuss a range of issues of mutual interest.

Mr. Rost

I congratulate British Gas on its more competitive tariffs for industrial and commercial consumers in response to complaints from them. Will my right hon. Friend discuss with Ofgas the remaining serious problem for users of fewer than 25,000 therms? There is an incentive to waste gas because it benefits a user burning 22,000 therms to burn 25,000 or more as he would then pay less. Is not that a breach of the Gas Act 1986 and the licence? Should not there be a smoother banding and a lower threshold so that that ridiculous anomaly can be ended?

Mr. Morrison

I do not believe that it is a breach of the Gas Act. We have discussed the matter with the Director General of Ofgas who is having further discussions with British Gas. My hon. Friend's point is perfectly fair.

Mr. Jessel

Should not British Gas be warmly commended for its sponsorship of the arts, such as the concert at Hampton Court palace last September for charity—which you, Mr. Speaker, were kind enough to attend?

Mr. Morrison

Yes, and I hope that you enjoyed the concert, Mr. Speaker. It would be only fair to say that the entire energy industry should be commended for its sponsorship of the arts.

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