Power rate hike for many users

The cost of electricity appears set to increase for low household consumption (of up to 800 kilowatt-hours per four months) and decline for low- and medium-voltage commercial consumers through the termination of so-called cross-subsidies, demanded by the country’s creditors through the revised bailout agreement.

The changes will affect 2.5 million consumers, including a large number of household connections as well as agricultural consumers that are subsidized. Those domestic consumers not only include low-income families but also holiday homes.

"In effect, what we have done is to have small enterprises subsidize the power supply to second and third homes,» a Public Power Corporation official familiar with the subject told Kathimerini.

Still, the Environment and Energy Ministry has asked the European Commission if it can postpone the complete abolition of cross-subsidies until end-2015.