Cameron calls for investigation into soaring cost of gas bills

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Indy Politics

David Cameron will call today for competition watchdogs to investigate gas prices amid concern at soaring utility bills.

The Conservative leader will ask the Office of Fair Trading to investigate the way gas is traded. The party warned that some retail gas prices were going up even though there was no evidence of increases in wholesale prices.

Mr Cameron will make his plea at the launch of the party's cost of living campaign, described by aides as one of his main themes for the coming year. He will use a visit to Reading to claim that ministers have done too little to defend the interests of consumers.

"The cost of living for working people is going up and up and Labour just doesn't seem to care. So we're campaigning to help people live for less, and we're stating with utility bills," he will say.

"It's not clear that people are being charged a fair price for energy today and we're calling on the competition authorities to investigate the utility companies to make sure people are getting a fair deal. In the complacency over the economy, the Government have neglected the working people of Britain who try to provide for themselves and their families but find it increasingly difficult to do so. They want a party that will fight for them and keep the cost of living down."

He will highlight four areas where price increases are hitting people hard: taxation, which he will say has risen by 81 per cent since Labour came to power; utility bills; "unaffordable" housing and rises in the cost of vital goods and services such as plumbing and rail fares.