By Marcus Leach

As of August 18th British Gas will enforce an increase in its domestic gas and electricity bills.

Owned by Centrica, British Gas will increase gas bills by an average of 18%, with electricity bills rising by an average of 16%, which equates to roughly a £190-per-year rise for the average duel fuel user.

The reason for the rise, according to British Gas, is the increase in the wholesale price of gas, which has risen by 30% from last winter's price.

"We are buying in a global energy market and have to pay the market rate," Phil Bentley, managing director of British Gas, said.

"Rising wholesale costs is an issue facing all energy suppliers."

Unions have hit out at the news, calling on the government to better protect the consumers.

Low paid workers across the country are already struggling to put food on the table and keep a roof over their heads with rising inflation adding to household bills," said Mike Jeram, public sector uniuon, UNISON’s Head of Business and Environment.

“The British energy market needs an urgent review and overhaul to ensure that it starts acting in the interest of consumers. The Government needs to get a grip and make sure the country invests urgently in renewable energy to become more self-sufficient.”

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