Ruling party, gov't agree to tentatively postpone electricity, gas rate hikes
SEOUL, March 31 (Yonhap) -- The ruling People Power Party (PPP) and the government agreed to temporarily hold off raising electricity and gas bills but reaffirmed that rate hikes are "inevitable," a ruling party lawmaker said Friday.
The decision was made in a policy consultation meeting amid concerns that a hike in utility fees may add onto economic burdens on the people amid high inflation and an economic slowdown.
Rep. Park Dae-chul, the PPP's chief policymaker, said the government will decide on the rate hike after making additional assessments of international energy prices and discussions with experts.
Park still said that the ruling party and government reached a consensus that the rate hike cannot be further looked upon.
"We again reaffirmed that a hike in electricity and gas bills is inevitable," Park said. "But more discussion is needed on the timing and scope of the hike among multiple options suggested by the industry ministry."
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