Northern Ireland

Electricity users able to switch suppliers

Plug

Northern Ireland's domestic electricity users now have, for the first time, a choice of suppliers.

Consumers may switch to energy company Airtricty, the first supplier to compete with NIE Energy since the market opened to competition in 2007.

Dublin-based Airtricity expects to undercut prices by about 14% in the NI market and create 75 jobs.

Airtricity claims customers can now typically save £95 on their annual household electricity bill.

The company said no minimum or fixed-term contracts would be entered into and consumers could make the switch, available from 0700 BST on Tuesday, without contacting their current supplier.

Under the present system 6,000 consumers will be permitted to switch to Airtricity each month.

However, the Utility Regulator, the power watchdog, is currently working with suppliers and the industry to introduce an unlimited switching system.

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