Tesco has said it is to prepared to cut prices and help the Irish government in its battle against inflation ­ if the ban on superstores is scrapped. The offer is contained in the report of an economic consultants' study commissioned by the multiple, which claims that the cap on superstore development ­ 35,000 sq ft in Dublin and 30,000 sq ft elsewhere ­ is impeding competition and keeping prices high. Publication of the report, by Peter Bacon & Associates, consultants frequently used by government, comes as a decision is awaited from Environment Minister Noel Dempsey on whether the limits on the size of retail developments are to be made permanent. Tesco hopes he will be persuaded by the promise of substantial price cuts, to lift the limits and allow its superstore plans to go ahead. Stores over 30,000 sq ft, says the report, are less costly, more economic to operate and can offer lower prices, which "benefits consumers and efforts to control inflation" ­ now close to 7%. Such outlets could produce savings for Irish consumers of up to IR£150m, "representing about 5% of multiples' retail prices". But RGDATA, the independent grocers' body, said: "This Tesco commissioned report is seeking to allow Tesco to build large superstores in out of town locations and cause the same damage here as it inflicted in the UK." {{NEWS }}