Energie-Nederland, the trade association for energy companies, does not want to intervene in the market but prefers to adjust taxes to prevent a sharp rise in energy bills. With this, the trade association is responding to Minister Wopke Hoekstra of Finance.
He announced on Thursday that the outgoing cabinet wants to intervene so that the energy bill does not become too high for households.
According to the association, gas prices have risen to historic highs in recent weeks, but the market is now doing its job. “The market may not be in the most optimal conditions right now, but they may not be structural either, so it would be good if the government takes action to help vulnerable groups,” says Roel Kaljee, program manager at Energie-Nederland. “The government is responsible for taxes and the storage of sustainable energy (ODE). Including the VAT, that’s half of the energy bill,” explains Kaljee.
The cabinet previously anticipated the rising prices of gas and electricity and earmarked 375 million euros for this. But, according to Energie-Nederland, that amount could be higher. “The amount of taxes is part of the tax plan every year, so there is plenty of room to adjust the tax rates. Then the government can also achieve the effect it wants. We are now mainly dealing with excesses. As a government, you want to compensate for that,” says Kaljee.
The association thinks that the cabinet would do well to go through a number of scenarios for the coming period. “As suppliers, we can also take into account the tax rates that will apply in the advance calculation and set them less high than without that measure. Then customers do not have to wait for an annual invoice, but they immediately notice that the monthly amount is lower than if nothing would happen.”