New gov’t energy crisis support takes effort’s overall cost to €600m

The government is planning to introduce two additional energy crisis support measures for consumers worth an extra 100 million euros, in the form of doubled aid worth 60 million euros, expected to become available during the festive season, and 40 million euros to help low-income households facing electricity supply cuts cover their reconnection costs.

These latest support measures would increase the cost of the government’s overall effort to over 600 million euros.

It remains unclear if the state budget possesses leeway to handle further support measures for the energy crisis. GDP growth is projected to exceed 6.2 percent, but the primary deficit is currently estimated to reach 7.4 percent of GDP. The country is expected to face a primary deficit for a third consecutive year in 2022.

A plan that would enable consumers to make electricity bill payments through installments, as an addition to some help offered by energy suppliers, has not been tabled by the government but is being considered, energy ministry sources informed.

The energy ministry is closely monitoring developments in an effort to avoid any further increase of unpaid receivables, which rose to alarming levels, especially for power utility PPC, during the country’s decade-long recession that preceded the current energy crisis.