Federal government agrees on gas surcharge

The federal government has agreed on an ordinance on the state gas surcharge, which will lead to price increases for gas customers from autumn. The Ministry of Economics announced on Thursday in Berlin that the cabinet had approved the levy in a written circulation procedure.

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Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) said that the federal government’s decision for the temporary levy will and must be accompanied by further relief for the citizens.

The surcharge should take effect from the beginning of October and benefit gas suppliers such as Uniper, who have to buy replacement gas volumes from Russia at high prices for the missing, cheaper gas volumes. So far, however, you cannot pass on these additional costs; this is to be done via the levy.

Uniper was in financial turmoil, the federal government had decided on a billion-euro rescue package.

Exact amount not yet known

The ordinance is expected to come into force in mid-August. It is unclear how high the levy is and when exactly it will reach consumers. The amount of the surcharge is to be determined for the first time by August 15, 2022.

The planned surcharge for all gas customers is expected to apply from October 1st.Photo: Patrick Pleul/dpa

According to the draft ordinance, the amount depends largely on the volume and price of the gas to be procured as a replacement and on demand. Habeck had mentioned a range of 1.5 to 5 cents per kilowatt hour.

Habeck explained: “The temporary levy is a consequence of the crisis caused by Russia. It is not an easy step, but it is necessary in order to secure the heat and energy supply in private households and in the economy.”

According to the minister, the crisis that Russia’s illegal attack has produced needs a strong social response. “Some companies are also under pressure from the high prices. Accordingly, we will extend the aid programs and thus help in this crisis. This is about preserving jobs and maintaining supply chains.” (dpa)

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