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Irish Republic (Gas Supplies)

Volume 35: debated on Monday 17 January 1983

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asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether any estimate has been made of the price of the consumer gas supplied from the Irish Republic and of how this price will compare with (a) coal, (b) electricity and (c) oil.

Pending the completion of negotiations with the authorities in the Republic of Ireland on the terms on which natural gas would be supplied to Northern Ireland, and of the arrangements for its distribution, it is not possible to forecast with accuracy the price at which it could be made available to the consumer. It is however expected that natural gas could be retailed at a price which would be at least 25 per cent. less than the equivalent price of towns gas in Northern Ireland. Studies have indicated that this is likely to be fully competitive with the total costs to the consumer of other fuels.