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Manitoba gas customers told to expect 5 per cent price hike Saturday

Gas rates will be rising in Manitoba effective Saturday. Mario Beauregard / The Canadian Press

WINNIPEG – The Manitoba Public Utilities Board has approved Centra Gas rate increases that will cost a typical residential customer $43 per year, the board says.

The combination of a two-year rate rider and an increase in the primary gas rate to 16.65 cents per cubic metre from 15.51 cents per cubic metre will increase residential customers’ bills approximately five per cent, a news release from the PUB says.

The new price will come into effect on Saturday. The rate will be reviewed again on Feb. 1.

The rate rider is being imposed to recover $23.3 million of the $46.7 million Centra Gas spent to supply gas during the unusually cold 2013-14 winter, the PUB said. Centra Gas attributed the shortfall to extreme weather and volatile natural gas prices.

Customers who have signed fixed-term fixed-price contracts with either Centra Gas or a private broker won’t be affected by the increase.

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The PUB suggested customers consider options for reducing energy consumption, including installing high-efficiency furnaces and improving insulation.

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