Women and Equalities
John Hayes (South Holland and The Deepings, Conservative)
Again, the hon. Gentleman will know, because of his experience in the House, that when British Gas announced a price rise, as the first company to do so, we of course had a discussion with the company. I had discussions with British Gas at the weekend, and I spoke to other energy companies as well. Of course that dialogue takes place, because I want to be clear about the reasons for these rises. International gas prices comprise a significant reason for them, but I think it is absolutely right that we are robust in our dealings with energy companies; this needs to be a mature and professional relationship. That dialogue will never be better than it has been since I got here, but I tell hon. Members that it will take place on terms defined by the people’s interests and not the interests of any particular commercial organisation.