Tough guy Varadkar says he’ll press energy companies for further price cuts – – Our News, Your Views

Tough guy Varadkar says he’ll press energy companies for further price cuts

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar will meet the four major energy companies this afternoon and tell them the latest price cuts have not gone far enough, reports RTE,

Mr Varadkar was speaking at Farmleigh House after meeting Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic.

He said: “I’ll be putting pressure on them to bring prices down further over the winter,” reports RTE.

He also said he would ask utilities to create hardship funds and disconnection policies, as they did last winter.

On energy security, Mr Varadkar expressed confidence that supplies will be secure through winter.

He said if the issue had come to the fore it would have happened last year, but since then Ireland has built energy storage and looked for alternative sources.

Mr Varadkar also said the budget would include help for households with energy bills using revenue from a new windfall profits tax.

The Taoiseach also said that the new tax revenue on windfall profits will be included in the energy bill budget.

His comments came after Tánaiste Michael Martin and Finance Minister Michael McGrath said the government would “do its best for households”, who he said were facing “unavoidable” high bills due to the cost of living, reports RTE.

“While there have been some energy price reductions made – prices remain too high. We know people are still facing pressure and we will act to help them again,” Mr Martin said, reports RTE.

Without referencing a new round of energy credits, he added: “We have to act with a combination of action to help people with major price increases and action to try to reduce pressures pushing up prices,” reports RTE.

Mr McGrath stated that he would need until early October to determine the budget’s one-off measures, which exceeded €4 billion last year.

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