Gas prices are not to rise for 7 million households – the government has adopted the bill

Gas bills for households and certain utilities (such as hospitals) will not increase in 2022. For some recipients, gas prices will drop due to setting the maximum price at the tariff level of the company with the highest market share – the published draft act of the Ministry of State Assets assumes. Climate Minister Anna Moscow announced that the government adopted the bill on Tuesday.

As Moscow emphasized at a press conference following the government meeting, today housing communities or cooperatives make statements aimed at including apartments in tariff gas prices. She noted that until today such declarations were made only by approx. 10 percent. entitled, therefore the government decided to reverse the legal status.

– After the entry into force of the law, the draft of which was adopted by the Council of Ministers, all communities and cooperatives will be automatically transferred to tariffs with compensation from January 1 – she explained, adding that it would not require any statements or documents.

In the case of a self-government-managed entity, this will require a declaration from the specific manager as to what percentage of gas consumption is intended for non-residential purposes, Moscow added. As she emphasized, currently the gas seller is not able to identify the purposes for which the gas purchased collectively is used.

– We are already appealing to all self-government real estate boards to submit appropriate statements. The assumption is that the first goal of the communities is a housing purpose, the automatically issued invoices will be corrected – she emphasized.

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Protection of gas consumers

As we read in the Regulatory Impact Assessment of the draft act of the Ministry of State Assets (MAP) on special solutions to protect gas fuel consumers in connection with the situation on the gas market, it will have “a measurable positive impact on the economic situation of millions of Polish families”.

It was noted that the gas fuel bills of these customers will not increase in 2022., and for the part “they will decrease due to the fixing of the maximum price at the level of the tariff of the company with the highest market share”. It added that in the coming years, the bills of household consumers “will not be increased by the actual purchase costs of gaseous fuel for their needs by companies dealing in gas fuel trading, which have not been covered in the tariffs in force in 2022”.

According to MAP, the project will have a positive impact on the costs to society of using public services.

The project shows that the proposed solutions can be used, for example, by approx. 7 million households, maximum 40,000 cooperatives and housing communities.

CONTENT OF THE DRAFT ACT >>>

No increase in gas prices – the government approved the bill

In the Regulatory Impact Assessment, it was noted that the proposed solutions assume an extension of the catalog of covered entities tariff protection until 31 December 2023 o some categories of recipients who are entities performing tasks in the field of public utility – incl. hospitals, schools, nurseries, kindergartens, night shelters; introducing a compensation mechanism for natural gas sellers to tariff customers, which would be used to compensate for the effects of price freezing on the extended catalog of tariff customers; confirmation and emphasis in the content of the law on the necessity of tariff protection of natural gas consumers in multi-unit buildings who have not concluded individual comprehensive agreements or natural gas purchase agreements with energy companies.

As stated, the cost of compensation for the use of lower gas prices for some gas fuel consumers will be approx. PLN 10 billion.

The justification stated that the compensations will be paid by the Price Difference Payment Fund, to which in 2022 they will be transferred: 40 percent. funds obtained from the sale of emission allowances by auction, and funds from the COVID-19 Counteracting Fund.

EVALUATION OF THE IMPACT OF THE PROJECT REGULATION >>>

The situation on the gas market

As stated in the draft, in the second half of 2021 there was an unprecedented increase in natural gas prices on the European Union wholesale market. “The prices of natural gas in December 2021 on EU exchanges were many times higher than the prices of natural gas in the corresponding period of 2020. The above situation generates significant costs for household consumers and entities from the public utility sector, which, due to their functions, often they are not able to obtain funds on their own to pay significantly higher bills for natural gas “- it was written.

The authors of the draft indicate that the unusually high prices of natural gas, with the parallel protection of certain categories of customers against the radical increase in natural gas prices, generate the risk of a significant deterioration of the financial condition of gas sellers. The necessity to take further actions was indicated in order to, inter alia, protection of natural gas consumers who are particularly exposed to the effects of an increase in its prices. The idea is to protect “household customers and some customers performing public utility tasks, while introducing compensation for gas sellers selling to tariff customers”.

Gas price increases

In December, the Energy Regulatory Office announced that as a result of the increase in gas tariffs of the largest seller, PGNiG OD, approved by the President of the Energy Regulatory Office, the monthly bills of households using gas to prepare meals will increase by approx. PLN 9 net per month. The Office also announced that from January 1, 2022, the total average increase in the electricity bill of an average household will amount to approx. 24%, which means an increase of approx. PLN 21 net per month.

The media reports that gas price increases for consumers reach even several hundred percent, this mainly applies to business entities, local governments, but also some communities and housing cooperatives that have their own gas boiler houses (collective boiler houses).

Pursuant to the law in force, the sale of gas to households is subject to tariffication by the end of 2023. Individual customers connected to the national gas network of high-methane gas may change their supplier, but all household gas sellers must have a tariff approved by the regulator. The individual offer is limited upfront by the tariff. The ability to change the supplier depends on the location and availability of the offer within the distribution network to which they are connected.

Cover additive

Due to the increase in prices, President Andrzej Duda signed the Act on the protection allowance on December 28, 2021, which is to help some households cover some of the rising prices, e.g. gas. The supplement will be paid twice a year. The first installment is to be paid by March 31, 2022, and the second installment – by December 2, 2022. The allowance will be granted to households with average monthly income – determined in accordance with the definition included in the Act on family benefits – not exceeding PLN 2,100 in a single-person household or PLN 1,500 per person in a multi-person household.

The cover allowance will be due for the period from January 1, 2022 to December 31, 2022, and its amount will depend on the number of people in the household (PLN 400 for a single-person household, PLN 600 for 2-3 people, PLN 850). for 4-5 persons and PLN 1150 for a farm consisting of at least 6 people).

Use of the gas network in PolandPAP

Main photo source: Shutterstock

About Eric Wilson

The variety offered by video games never ceases to amaze him. He loves OutRun's drifting as well as the contemplative walks of Dear Esther. Immersing himself in other worlds is an incomparable feeling for him: he understood it by playing for the first time in Shenmue.

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