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Advancing Northern Irelands long-term energy

Friday, 1 August 2008

Energy Minister Arlene Foster has met with the Northern Ireland Authority for Utility Regulation (NIAUR) to consider key energy issues

The Minister met the NIAUR Chairman, Peter Matthews and Chief Executive, Iain Osborne to discuss future energy policy for Northern Ireland.

Among the issues discussed was the crucial matter of rising energy prices and the impact these are having on both, the business community and vulnerable households in fuel poverty. The new Single Electricity Market and the rollout of the natural gas industry across Northern Ireland were also on the agenda.

They also agreed on the importance of strategic planning for Northern Ireland’s energy future and the Minister encouraged the Regulator to work closely with her Department in building competitive, secure and sustainable energy markets.

Commenting after the meeting, Arlene Foster said: “There has never been a more challenging time for energy policy in Northern Ireland. I welcome the opportunity to engage with the Chairman and Chief Executive of NIAUR on how we address the numerous challenges and balance the interests of business, householders and the environment.”

The Minister added: “I acknowledge and welcome the positive contribution the Regulator can make to future energy policy in Northern Ireland and have undertaken to meeting on a quarterly basis to ensure we drive the agenda forward in the interests of all Northern Ireland consumers.”

Notes to Editors:

  1. Minister met with NIAUR in Netherleigh on Thursday 31 July 2008.
  2. For media enquiries, please contact DETI Press Office on 028 9052 9297. Outside office hours, please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699 715 440 and your call will be returned.