The price of gas in the Netherlands is the second highest in Europe, with only households in Sweden paying more, according to an analysis by website Energievergelijk.nl.
The research is based on figures from the Household Energy Price Index, produced by the Austrian and Hungarian regulators, and which compares prices across 33 countries.
Dutch consumers are currently paying 23.3 cents per kilowatt hour for gas, or €2.25 per cubic metre including tax, which is double the European average of 12.4 cents. The situation in both Germany and Belgium is in line with the average, with charges of 14.2 cents and 12.2 cents respectively.
‘Some 37% of Dutch gas bills is down to taxes, the highest percentage in all of Europe,’ Energievergelijk.nl spokesman Koen Kuijper said. ‘In addition, markets which are strongly dependent on imported gas often have higher prices than those with more water, nuclear and coal-fired energy.’
Electricity charges in the Netherlands are also higher than in many EU countries but the difference is not as sharp as with gas. The Dutch pay an average of 30.5 cents per kilowatt hour of electricity, which is four cents above the European average. Electricity is most expensive – 51 cents per kilowatt hour – in Italy and cheapest in Hungary at 9.9 cents.
Compared with last year, European electricity prices have risen by an average of 42%, while gas prices are up 83%.
Kuijper said he expects the biggest problem for Dutch consumers to come at the end of the year, when fixed energy contracts expire and people increase their use of gas for heating.
The Dutch government has cut value added tax (btw) on fuel bills from 21% to 9% in an effort to reduce household bills, and has come up with a compensation package.
European leaders on Tuesday agreed to take steps to ensure a voluntary 15% cut in gas usage over the next few months, to head of the risk of shortages because of the war in Ukraine.
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