Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Welsh language might just ...

... be at the point where it creates divisions, not for lack of cultural support, but because E·ON the electric utility service provider based in Düsseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany doesn't believe it can deliver competitive priced energy to the peoples of Wales, it has made public the fears that many people have, the fear that nation building by Cardiff Bay politics will be that "bridge too far", it will cost the little people far too much to the point where goodwill is lost at the checkout.

New Welsh language legislation obliges [under the law] private sector firms providing energy, telecommunications and transport to provide a bilingual service.

The E·ON warning is to be found in a leaked letter from E.ON.  The letter was part of its role in the recently-ended consultation on the exact standards the companies will have to meet to comply with the legislation, the firm says it is likely that the higher costs of providing the new Welsh language services will be mirrored in price rises for all customers in Wales.

E·ON ...
"We understand and support the overall aim of the consultation to increase the opportunity for Welsh people to use their language in their own country. 
"We are also fully aware and accepting of the fact that we would have to change how we operate in Wales in order to promote the Welsh language. 
"Our concern lies in both the cost and complexity of the proposals set out in the consultation. 
"We believe that the lack of flexibility in the proposed standards means that the cost of compliance will be high."
It continued ...
"In addition, we are concerned that the standards could make the acquisition of new customers in Wales less financially attractive to energy suppliers and therefore reduce customer choice.

I believe this means E·ON is threatening to withdraw from the market delineated by the reach of the legislation, would other energy suppliers follow E·ON and withdraw from our marketplace ?

E·ON expands ...
"These increased costs could be reduced if energy suppliers were able to match the activities provided in Welsh to demand from their customers. 
"We feel an incremental approach to providing Welsh language services would be more efficient and offer greater incentive to develop Welsh language provision further."

This is a reflection on the fact that demand for Welsh language services is very low except in very specific geographical areas of Wales, is there a business opportunity for a Welsh language service that could be used [shared] by all the private sector firms affected by  the legislation ...

... or could it be this new legislation is not so concerned with providing a good service to Welsh speakers but an attempt to restructure society in Wales, might the Welsh Language Commissioner take a leaf from the exploits of Cnut the Great who demonstrated the futility of standing in the path of waves [social progression]. 


  1. Unbelievable the response there has been against EON on facebook following the report in the Echo, where they said they would financially penalise people in Wales if they have to provide a bilingual service to their customers. Fantastic response over 450 so far has liked Jamie Bevan criticsm of EON and over 75 angry response from people. Brilliant! I hope they will now consider carefully their policy. Best thing to do if you're a Eon customer is hit them where it hurts in their pockets, threaten to switch suppliers if they do not reconsider their positioin.

  2. I think the problem is with the threat to withdraw from the market in Wales, if one supplier withdrew might the other suppliers follow to coerce the Cardiff administration, what would be the affect ?