Latest quarterly transparency report on NI’s retail energy market published

28 February 2019

Today the Utility Regulator publishes its latest Quarterly Transparency Report (QTR) for Quarter 4 (October to December) 2018.

We publish retail Transparency Reports on an annual and quarterly basis. The reports provide a range of information about the electricity and gas energy supply markets in Northern Ireland. The QTR and ATR presents data collected by the UR as part of the Retail Energy Market Monitoring (REMM) framework. REMM requires network companies and suppliers to submit data on a range of indicators to enhance UR transparency around market behaviours and regulatory compliance.  We use the information outlined in the report to review the progress and impact of supply competition; build knowledge for regulatory decisions; comply with EU Third Package mandatory requirements on market monitoring; allow other interested stakeholders to understand more readily the activity within our energy markets; and to help promote the interests of consumers.

The most recent market activity data (Q4 2018) illustrates the following:

  • In the electricity domestic and I&C sectors there continues to be a gradual change in the market dynamics. Power NI (the incumbent price controlled electricity supplier) retain their dominant position with 56.8% of connections in the domestic market with continued growth of the competing suppliers.
  • Electricity switching activity in Q4 2018 has increased from the previous quarter. Domestic customers continue to engage in the electricity market with over 29,400 switches completed during Q4 2018 which is a 3.7% quarterly switching rate (an increase from 3.0% in Q3 2018). I&C electricity switching increased to a switching rate of 2.4% (from 2.2% in the previous quarter), with over 1,700 switches completed. 
  • In the gas sector, I&C switching activity increased in the Greater Belfast area and decreased in the Ten Towns I&C market.  The I&C switching rate was 0.9% in Greater Belfast and 0.5% in the Ten Towns (compared to 0.8% and 1.3% respectively in Q3 2018).  Gas switching rates remain lower than those in the electricity sector.

Any comments or queries in relation to this paper should be made to:

Seán Murphy
Utility Regulator
Queens House
14 Queen Street
Belfast BT1 6ED   
Direct Tel: +44 (0) 28 9031 6332

Copies of all documents can be made available in large print, Braille, audio cassette and a variety of relevant minority languages if required.