Bord Gáis Energy has today announced a substantial increase in its residential gas and electricity prices.

The company has said that from 2 October, the average residential electricity bill will rise by 34% or €48.25 per month and the average residential gas bill will jump by 39% or €43.80.

Standing charges will remain unchanged.

The energy provider blamed record wholesale energy costs for the decision, which it said it regrets having to make.

In March, the company increased its average electricity bill by 27% and its average gas bill by 39%.

Last year, it raised electricity prices three times and gas prices twice.

The company has more than 513,000 residential and business customers.

The increases will add around €579 a year to the average customer's electricity bill and €526 to their gas bill.

The move follows a raft of increases in recent days by a range of energy suppliers, including Electric Ireland, SSE Airtricity and Prepay Power.

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"There is no precedent for the current energy crisis and consumers and businesses across the globe are grappling with very challenging increases in the cost of living," said Dave Kirwan, Managing Director of Bord Gáis Energy.

"We deeply regret having to raise our prices but the scale of increases in wholesale energy costs leaves us with no choice.

"We continue to do everything we can to reduce the impact on our customers and keep our rates as competitive as possible."

The company has pledged 10% of its operating profits to an Energy Support Fund to support customers who are having difficulties paying bills, with €1.25m pledged to the fund earlier this year.

"We are working with a number of organisations to help customers access this fund, which has already supported many eligible customers facing difficulty," Mr Kirwan said.

"We know that there are customers who are struggling and our urgent message to them is to engage with us so that we can give them supports that reflect their unique circumstances."

Daragh Cassidy, head of communications at comparison site, said the cumulative effect of multiple price rises by Bord Gáis Energy means an average customer will likely be paying €1,300 more for their electricity this year compared to 12 months ago, and €1,000 more for their gas.

"We're heading into winter with gas and electricity prices at absolutely astronomical levels. And it will get even worse," he said.

"The average gas and electricity bill is now around €4,000. That’s close to the UK price cap of £3,549.

"In the UK the price cap is forecast to rise to over €6,000 in January," Mr Cassidy added.

"Over 70% of our gas comes via the UK so our prices track theirs relatively closely. So that shows you what we could be looking at."