01/20/2012 12:41 EST | Updated 03/21/2012 05:12 EDT

Natural gas rates drop in Manitoba, homeowners to save 9.2 per cent

WINNIPEG - Manitobans are about to pay less for natural gas.

The Public Utilities Board has approved a reduction of more than three cents per cubic metre in primary gas rates.

The new rates are effective Feb. 1.

The regulatory agency says residential bills will drop by 9.2 per cent, which will save the average homeowner about $80 a year.

The board approved a 2.2 per cent reduction last fall as well.

It says natural gas prices across North America have been dropping since 2008, due in part to new supplies of shale gas being developed.