Competition Authority chairman William Prasifka has confirmed that an investigation is underway into soaring electricity and gas prices in Ireland.

The move has been warmly welcomed by the opposition party in Ireland, Fine Gael, who’s enterprise spokesman Phil Hogan has called on the Competition Authority to question energy regulators about why they are approving dramatic price rises for electricity and gas.

Mr Prasifka said that the competition watchdog will be publishing a consultation paper on the issue by December 2006.

This clearly demonstrates the need for more co-ordination between the Competition Authority and the regulators in the interests of consumers, and supports Fine Gael’s call for greater coherency in determining energy prices, Mr Hogan commented.