Published Thursday, 29 March 2012
Phoenix refused the new controls. (© Getty)
It comes after the Utility Regulator made a determination aimed at lowering the cost of gas for business and domestic users in Northern Ireland.
The new controls could see businesses make annual saving of tens of thousands of pounds, the regulator said, with a yearly £10 saving for homes.
Phoenix Natural Gas proposed licence modifications which have been rejected.
The Utility Regulator said: "Had we accepted the PNGL proposals, domestic consumer bills would have been £25 higher per annum.
"Following the rejection of the Utility Regulator's price control determination and proposed licence modifications by PNGL on 6 February, we have referred the PNGL price control licence conditions to the Competition Commission.
"We are required by our statutory duties to refer the matter to the Competition Commission."
The Competition Commission will now assess whether Phoenix's control licence conditions operate against the public interest.
It is expected to report within six months.