12/01/2012 04:45 GMT | Updated 12/01/2012 09:29 GMT

British Gas Drops Electricity Prices By 5%

British Gas, the UK's biggest energy supplier, has announced an average 5% reduction in its standard domestic electricity prices, a day after its rival EDF Energy slashed its gas tariffs by the same amount.

Southern Electric and Swalec energy supplier SSE has it would cut the price of household gas by 4.5% from 26 March shortly after British Gas made its announcement on Thursday.

Around 5.3 million customers are expected to benefit from the British Gas cut, which will knock off £24 from the average bill.

British Gas had increased gas bills by 18% and electricity by 16% in August.

But the company is not reducing its gas prices, which are expected to go up in the long term.

As British Gas and SSE announce price cuts to household energy bills, Richard Lloyd, executive director at Which?, says:

“British Gas and SSE customers will welcome any help to manage their bills this winter. But with average bills now more than £1300 a year, small reductions of around £30 will not be a solution for those struggling to pay their next bill.

“With three price cut announcements in two days, we now expect the other major suppliers to listen to their customers and do likewise. But this won't be enough to ensure that people get access to the affordable energy they need. That's why consumers expect the Government to take action to reform the energy market*.”