New Zealand Labour Party

Contact bows to pressure

Contact Energy’s decision to cut its pre-pay rates to be in line with its customers who pay monthly is good news and the company deserves credit for responding so quickly, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesperson David Shearer. 

“Two months ago I took Contact to task for profiteering from pre-pay customers, stinging them with bills up to 38% more than normal electricity bills.

“Families in financial trouble were often the target. Often they are pressured to go on pre-pay schemes by power companies because they have difficulty paying their bills. Yet despite paying up front in advance, relieving power companies of any non-payment risk, they were charged more. 

“I argued charges for pre-pay customers should at least be the same as those on normal rates. 

“Other electricity companies have already dropped their prices after Labour’s campaign last year highlighted the practice of charging excess on pre-pay bills.

“It’s great that Contact has now come to the party as well pre-pay customers will get a much fairer deal than they were getting a year ago,” says David Shearer.