AKEL meeting with the Energy Minister on energy issues
16 March 2022, AKEL C.C. Press Office, Nicosia
Following the meeting of the General Secretary of the Central Committee of AKEL Stefanos Stefanou with the President of the Republic on energy issues, a delegation of AKEL, headed by the member of the Political Bureau Neoklis Sylikiotis, held a meeting with the Minister of Energy, Trade and Industry.
During the meeting, important policy issues on energy were raised, such as the need to hold lower price tendering for the purchase of the lowest possible price for energy from RES to the benefit of consumers and the economy in general. A proposal was also made to extend the Net metering and Self-Generation projects without restrictions, interruptions and re-tenders.
A proposal was again put forward by AKEL to use part of the revenues from the auctioning of greenhouse gases, as provided for in the relevant European directive, aiming at the abolition of the RES and public utility services fee paid by consumers. The AKEL delegation also proposed the provision of direct state support for vulnerable consumers in order to confront energy poverty, as well as the removal of the relevant tax paid with the electricity bill by other consumers.
AKEL also proposed extending the reduction of VAT on electricity from 19% to 9% without a time limit, as well as the adoption of a zero VAT rate for the cost of greenhouse gas emissions because it constitutes double taxation.
The AKEL delegation expressed to the Minister the Party’s concern about the long delay in the implementation of the project for the advent of natural gas to generate electricity and the consequences of this in terms of cost, adequacy and safe supply. Given that the natural gas advent timetable for 2023 does not appear feasible, the Ministry was asked whether alternative proposals were being considered that would ensure early advent of natural gas at a lower cost.
Finally, the Minister was asked whether the government plans to align with the Southern European countries – Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal and the French Presidency – at the upcoming energy market summit. The effort these countries are making is to pass the benefit of low-cost renewables directly to consumers and the economy, rather than rewarding producers with the sky-high cost of natural gas and conventional fuels.