HC Deb 22 July 1980 vol 989 c145W
Mr. Harold Walker

asked the Secretary of State for Energy what steps he is taking to eliminate unfair competition within the European Economic Community arising from differentials of gas and oil prices for industrial consumers.

Mr. Gray

[pursuant to his reply, 17 July 1980]: Gas and oil prices for industrial consumers in the European Community reflect many differing circumstances, and the existence of price differentials between fuels or between member States is not necessarily evidence of unfair pricing. If unfair energy pricing leads to unfair competition, that would generally be a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade.

I have, however, stressed on many occasions the importance of the economic pricing of energy. This principle received support from all member States at the Energy Council on 13 May and was also endorsed at the economic summit in Venice on 22–23 June.