Greece is proposing recession-hit countries receive concessions under European Union environmental rules, hoping that it can curb the rising energy costs of its firms and improve their competitiveness.
Greece’s crisis-battered firms may lose an additional 33,000 jobs through 2020, unless special provisions are introduced in EU carbon emission rules to lower the costs, the Energy Ministry said in a statement on Friday.
The EU Commission already said on Wednesday it would scale back its long-term climate and energy ambitions because of tougher economic conditions. But Greece’s plea would go beyond the Commission’s plan.
“We propose that the European Emission Trading System identify specific ways to assist countries in an unprecedented economic recession and/or exposed to a higher level of EU-competition,” the Energy Ministry said in a separate document outlining its proposal, seen by Reuters.
Greece, which currently holds the EU’s six-month rotating presidency, hopes to rally other countries to its cause, a ministry adviser told Reuters on condition of anonymity. [Reuters]