Allianz Trade suggests setting a low consumer price for basic energy needs

Measures and plans of EU countries to cushion the shock of high-energy prices do not provide enough incentive to save energy. A growing number of households are struggling to pay their energy bills.

Therefore, our experts therefore suggest for the introduction of a fixed low price to meet basic energy needs. For the rest of the energy consumption, the current market price should be paid. This proposal is also consistent with what the federal government now seems to want to achieve.

Johan Geeroms, Director Risk Underwriting Benelux at Allianz Trade: "The countermeasures are mainly aimed at lowering the price of energy, through a reduction in VAT and tax relief for renewable energy by example. But they do not sufficiently encourage the population to save energy, when citizens should be rewarded for their efforts. This is why we recommend working with a double price. Let's determine the basic consumption per household that will be offered at a low regulated price. All other energy needs must be purchased at market price". The idea of a dual pricing is also defended by the French economist Jean Pisany-Ferry, who advises the IMF and the European Commission.

According to Johan Geeroms, we must also take advantage of the current energy crisis to accelerate the energy transition. “There is a risk that the greening battle will falter in the wake of current energy concerns. In order to anchor climate policy in society, we are advocating for the creation of a new allocation: financial assistance for energy. Think of this aid as a kind of kitty that is subsidized by the government. The amount that households save on their energy consumption goes into an energy savings account and the government tops it up (depending on household income). We are thus killing two birds with one stone: stimulating energy-saving behavior while enabling low-income households to build up financial reserves. »

Concretely: “The simplest approach for such an energy savings regime would be to base it on the energy consumption of previous years. Deduct 25% and base the remuneration on the result. The closer the energy consumption is to the standard of 75%, the higher the remuneration,” explains Geeroms.

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