The cabinet wants to do something against the rising energy bills with ‘targeted measures’. Demissionary Minister Blok said after consultation with the most concerned government bodies that the cabinet takes the problem very seriously and that people can get “really hefty bills”. Rising gas prices threaten to increase the energy bills by tens of euros per month in the winter.
Blok said the options will be elaborated in the coming time to help both households and businesses and at least “absorb some of the price increases”. The measures should be particularly affected by people who really need it.
But the demissionary minister stressed that the interventions must be feasible and that this is complex, because there is no direct link between the level of income and the level of the energy bill. “You want to reach people that matter most. But you can have low-income people living in a well-isolated home or middle-income people who happen to live in a poorly isolated home”.
The most involved ministries have formed a sort of crisis team. A long list of possibilities has been devised. Among other things, it examines whether citizens and businesses can be compensated by income or energy taxes. It is also considered to reduce VAT temporarily.
Blok stressed that it is large sums, both for those involved and the Treasury. The cabinet has already allocated extra money for isolation with Prinsjesdag, and it may add an extra ‘impulse’. According to the Minister, this can be done by increasing amounts, but also by ensuring that isolations can be carried out faster.
The cabinet may announce Friday what measures it is taking. But Blok said it could be a little later as well.