Before outbreak of prices, Commission opens door to a reform of European energy market

Brussels reminds twenty-seven that rising gas and electricity prices increased their tax revenues.


In initially, she did not want to involve, arguing that only Member States can work to protect their savings from the damage of the outbreak of energy prices. It took several governments to rise, starting with France and Spain, but also the countries of Central Europe, Greece and, to a lesser extent, Italy, so that the European Commission seizes , reluctantly, about the subject. Wednesday, October 13, she had to present her proposals to mitigate the effects of this energy crisis, which threatens the return of growth in Europe as well as the climate change agenda of the twenty-seven.

In the short term, it’s true, the community executive is poor. Wednesday, he had to repeat that nothing, in Community regulations (state aid, taxation), does not prevent Member States from stealing households and companies most affected by the flight of their gas bills and ‘electricity. Twenty member states, including France, Italy, Spain, Greece or the Netherlands has already announced measures made of VAT declines, the most modest homes of companies, of business subsidies. or price gel.

In passing, the Commission recalled that about one-third of the European electricity bill is attributable to taxes, a third party to distributors and a third at the price of energy. Clearly, when prices rise, the recipes of the states too, as well as the revenues of the suppliers, most often in the public sphere, and the governments can draw in this “kitty”, as said a senior official, to lighten the invoice of citizens and companies. “For EDF, this crisis is an excellent business,” comments a diplomat. “Since the beginning of the year, VAT revenues and the domestic consumption tax on energy products accounted for a surplus of 700 million euros for Bercy,” details another European source.

Other probable inflationary thrusts

In addition, the Commission stresses that the ETS market revenues (Emissions Trading System) – on which the manufacturers buy tons of co 2 under the polluter pays principle -, which go into The coffers of the twenty-seven, also increased, with nearly 11 billion euros over one year. And can be used, too, to overcome the effects of the energy crisis.

In the medium term, the Commission is now more cooperative. Despite the reluctance of some commissioners and several capitals, starting with Berlin, The Hague and the Northern countries, it no longer excludes reforming the European energy market. Even though, as it repeats it, the latter “proved its effectiveness, including ensuring a flawless supply, since Europe is the only place in the world where there is never blackout”, the current crisis highlighted some of his deficiencies.

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/Media reports.