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Centrica, SSE, RWE Called to Parliament to Explain Higher Prices

Oct. 22 (Bloomberg) -- The heads of the Big Six U.K. energy suppliers including Centrica Plc, SSE Plc and RWE AG were called to Parliament next week to explain recent price increases.

Smaller companies were also called to give evidence on Oct. 29, the Energy and Climate Change Committee said in a statement.

RWE’s Npower yesterday became the third of the suppliers to raise gas and power bills. Centrica’s British Gas will increase household charges an average 9.2 percent next month and SSE by 8.2 percent from Nov. 15. Opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband said in September he planned to freeze tariffs for 20 months.

Lawmakers will explore the reasons for the increases, the different pricing policies suppliers use and how transparency on profits can be improved, according to the bi-partisan committee. The Big Six, supplying more than 90 percent of U.K. customers, also includes EDF Energy Plc, EON SE and Iberdrola SA-owned Scottish Power Ltd., which was made to pay 8.5 million pounds ($13.8 million) today by regulators for misleading customers.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sally Bakewell in London at sbakewell1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Will Kennedy at wkennedy3@bloomberg.net

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