Homeowners and tenants will receive a rebate of 60% on the extra charges they paid for their electricity from December to May, as part of a packet of relief measures to tackle soaring energy prices announced by the prime minister on Thursday.
In a televised address, Kyriakos Mitsotakis said the refunds would be capped at €600 and would apply to households earning up to €45,000 a year. The refund will be paid directly to the bank accounts of electricity customers.
“The Russian invasion of Ukraine and the ongoing war is affecting the entire world, Europe and our own country. It is being carried out not only with missiles and bombs, but also using energy as a weapon,” Mitsotakis said, before detailing the relief measures.
For May and June, households will receive a 50% rebate for any increase in consumption of over 300 KWh, he said.
The extra profits of power companies made during the energy crisis will be taxed at 90%, the prime minister also said.
He did not provide a cost estimate for the support measures.
“Regardless of European decisions, the Greek government, on its own initiative, will launch a system in July that will decouple international gas increases from the country’s electricity bills. This scheme will operate for up to one year,” he said.
Describing the measures as a “double state intervention” in the wholesale and the retail energy market, Mitsotakis said the government was setting an indirect cap on energy prices.
A program to encourage the public to replace old, energy-intensive air conditioners and refrigerators with energy-efficient models will also be launched as will a scheme for businesses to install solar panels on the roofs of their buildings.
The finer details of the support measures by the relevant ministers will follow on Friday.
According to Greece’s statistical authority, inflation in March reached a 26-year high of 8.9% on the year, which included a 30% rise in costs for rent, electricity, heating and gas.