ANDREW Wright of Ofgem says that its vision is for a simpler, clearer and fairer energy market (Letters, January 26).

Scottish consumers are hurting and wonder why Ofgem and the Government are taking so long to achieve this.

Every electricity consumer north of the old Hydro Board boundary line from Campbeltown and Bute across to Dundee is paying some 16 to 20% more to receive each unit of electricity than the consumers in the rest of Great Britain because of the way transmission charges are being levied. As prices go shooting up, this really hurts.

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It hurts even more because climate dictates that we need to consume more energy just to keep warm. Ofgem and the Government's second error has been to change the eco levy on all UK customers from a flat charge per customer to a charge based on consumption, so we are now penalised in two ways by the current system. Finally, the Government pockets VAT on these extra levies as well.

Why are the neediest being asked to pay so much more? Average price increase figures touted by the power supply companies are meaningless in this situation.

R J Ardern,

26A Southside Road, Inverness.