Offbeat: Splitting the tariffs: Basic supplier Removing

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The consumer center North Rhine-Westphalia has warned three basic suppliers because of a splitting of energy tariffs for new and existing customers.

Grundversorger werden kritisiert, weil sie bei Neukunden teilweise extrem hohe Energietarife fordern. © Patrick Pleul / DPA central image / DPA Basic supplier are criticized because they call partally extremely high energy tariffs with new customers.

The consumer guards called for the company RheinEnergie, Stadtwerke Gütersloh and the Wuppertal WSW Energy & Water to take back the new customer rates. Otherwise, the consumer center reserves a lawsuit. Due to the last highly increased electricity and gas prices, numerous providers from their new customers took more money than from the old ones.

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Prices for new customers many times higher

many basic suppliers, ie the energy providers with most customers in a region, have introduced new tariffs for new customers in recent weeks. Background was the delivery setting by the energy discounter, whereby many former customers fell into the so-called replacement supply by the local basic supplier. These are obliged to continue to provide customers with electricity and gas when eliminating the previous supplier, but must buy the energy to the association information about extremely high prices.

Much of the basic suppliers require prizes from the new customers, which are many times higher than that of the previous customer base, criticized the consumer center according to a communication published on Thursday. This is an unequal treatment that violates current regulations of energy law. In parallel with the warnings, the consumer guards called the Energy Cartel Authority NRW for action at the NRW Ministry of Economic Affairs.

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"With all the understanding of the not very simple situation of the basic supplier - that's not the case," said the Executive Board of the Consumer Center NRW, Wolfgang Schüszinski. The disadvantage of consumers, which fell into the basic supply without their own fault, is unlawful and contradict the actual protection purpose of basic supply. One will take place with all legal means against this discrimination, "which is only based on an arbitrarily specified reporting date."

The consumer Center NRW reported a sample in which the tariffs of 23 providers in NRW were under the magnifying glass. Of these, 18 companies would have introduced a new customer rate for the power supply. "The difference between new customer and existing customer prices of this provider is on average more than twice," it said. Three of the investigated providers are currently sewing a new customer work price per kilowatt hour of over 90 cents. The customers of providers who renounced a collective bargaining, on the other hand, paid only 34 cents per kilowatt hour.

The Wuppertal Stadtwerke rejected the allegations. "An inclusion in the general basic rate would have a price increase for many faithful existing customers of the WSW and we did not want to suggest that," said the WSW CEO Markus Hilkenbach according to a message. The state cartel authorities of Lower Saxony and NRW also dealt with the topic of second tariff and assessed this procedure as legally permissible.

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