This increase should enable importers to pass on the rise in prices resulting from the war in Ukraine. However, the most modest households will be helped.
The annual gas bill for German households will increase by several hundred euros due to the energy crisis, according to data published on Monday, the government however promising to cushion the shock for the most modest. From October 1, importers will be able to charge 2.4 centimes more per kilowatt hour (KWh) of gas from companies and individuals, the organization of network operators Trading Hub Europe (THE) announced on Monday.
In concrete terms, and including VAT, 2.4 cents per KWh represents 600 euros more on the annual bill of a family with two children and an average consumption of 20,000 KWh. The sum is 480 euros excluding taxes. Berlin promised tofind a wayto exempt this additional levy from VAT, according to the Ministry of the Economy.
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The levy was put in place by the government until April 1, 2024 to support gas importers and distributors who have had to buy more expensively on the world market since the war in Ukraine and the drop in Russian deliveries. It must be recalculated every three months.
“The aim is to secure gas supplies following the German and European energy crisis triggered by the Russian attack on Ukraine“, explained the ministry. Germany has stepped up efforts in recent months to find alternative supplies. More than half of the imported gas came, before the war in Ukraine, from Russia. This share has since risen to 35%.
A promised “new aid package”
“Germany developed a business model that was largely based on reliance on cheap Russian gas“recalled Robert Habeck, Minister of Economy and Climate, during a press conference. “It is a political error to have become dependent on a potentate (…) who despises the rights of man and citizens“, he hammered.
To cushion the shock, the levy “must and will be accompanied by a new aid package“, also promised Robert Habeck. Germany has already put in place aid totaling 30 billion euros to relieve individuals, including discounts at the pump or the popular 9-euro ticket that allows you to travel for a month in the public transport and regional trains. However, the measure stops at the end of August.
Berlin has also planned to inject billions of euros into Uniper, the leading importer and storer of gas in Germany, hit hard by the drop in Russian gas deliveries since mid-June. Conversely, the RWE group announced that it was waiving its right to pass on the price increase through this surcharge.
According to the Kiel Economic Institute, the impact of the additional levy on gas bills on inflation, already high in Europe’s largest economy, is expected to rise to 0.9 percentage points by the end of the year. end of the year. The chemical industry association (VCI), a major consumer of gas, for its part, estimates the annual additional cost caused by this levy at more than 3 billion euros, estimating in a press release that it is a “bitter pill» for manufacturers.
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