Energy bills up by 37%, benefits not paid until October

Photo: Depositphotos

Average annual household energy bills reached €2,320 in June, up €630 on June 2022, but well down on the €3,000 recorded at the end of last year, national statistics agency CBS said on Friday.

The 37% rise is down to the lasting impact of high energy prices and taxes, the CBS said. Individual bills will vary according to differences in energy use and contracts, home insulation, and the use of appliances.

The introduction of the energy price cap in January and subsequent variable energy delivery rates have reduced the average energy bill when compared with December and November last year, the CBS said.

Meanwhile the payment of extra energy benefits of €1,300 to low-income households has been held up because a law making this possible still has to be approved by the senate.

That will only happen after the summer recess, the association of local councils VNG has confirmed, which means pay-outs are unlikely to happen before October.

Last year, the energy benefit was paid quickly because soaring energy prices following the invasion of Ukraine caused a crisis situation. This meant local councils did not have to wait for the legal framework to be put in place.

“To sideline parliament like that was a very unusual step,” a social affairs ministry spokesman told broadcaster NOS. “Now we have a price cap and other spending power measures in place and we need a law,” he said.

Some local councils have decided not to wait for government money and have paid out €500 too poorer households as an advance.

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